Friday, September 30, 2011

EP Read Along: Alec Novella

Welcome back ladies!! Are you excited to get started on discussing the Novella? I know I am!! I've decided because the story is quite long we will break this up into two separate posts. Today we will discuss the prologue and chapters 1-5. Next week we will do chapters 6-12 and the epilogue. There is a lot of material to cover, are you ready? See you in the comments!
I don't know who made this but all credit goes to them.
I found it on Twilighted forums.

Prologue- Alec is speaking about important days in history. How they affect people differently how some won't remember a specific day because it holds no special meaning or because it has impacted their life. For Alec it's different some days are less important than others, and ones that are 'special' for him (the day of his birth) is 'special' to others for a different reason (his father gloating over a win for the mafia). So for Alec they all hold no meaning they are "Just numbers." "No significance." "Story of my life."

Chapter 1 Hell in a Handbasket-
Throughout this story we are in present day Chicago with Alec, but there are many flashbacks to many different times. Right now Alec is working in his office in Chicago, being the boss. He's collecting money and working on hiring a hostess for his club. He gets a call from Edward explaining one of the clubs in Vegas is going to be raided by the cops because of prostitution. Alec tells Edward to take care of it, because it's his job to do so. And he is "replaceable". He recalls the day he visited Edward at the hospital in the ICU. He remembers feeling Edward was a victim, something he tried to never think about in his line of work. Alec also prayed to God to intervene to spare someone caught up in their world. He hates threatening Edward over mafia business but he does it because he wants Edward to survive in this world. The only way Edward will survive is to learn, and they only way he'll learn is for Alec to be tough on him.

We flashback multiple times to October 1996 the day of Elizabeth's murder. Carlisle runs to Alec and Esme's house frantic and covered in blood. He is having a breakdown and without having to be told Alec knew something had happened to Elizabeth. Alec goes to the morgue to identify the body, because Carlisle was in no condition to do it. When the officer is asking basic questions about Elizabeth, Alec can't answer them. The cop says "You know, for being her family, you sure don't know much about her." He knows it's true. 

Chapter 2 Cut to the Chase-
We start with a flashback to April 1982 Alec is 18 years old. He is instructed to be at the bosses house after a job. The boss happens to be Antonio Cullen; Esme and Carlisle's father. Alec runs into Esme and becomes flustered by her appearance. He doesn't understand why he was having a reaction to her presence and chalks it up to allergies or a stroke. This is one of the most awkwardly adorable scenes between the two. Esme has a date that night and Alec is all over the place with his emotions. Antonio notices and with a neutral face and calm demeanor waits for him to crack. Sounds a little like someone else we know. When Alec is finally relieved for the night he heads out to follow Esme on her date.
At the drive in Alec parks in the back partially concealed. He watches Esme and her date eat popcorn and drink soda. When Esme leans in to kiss the boy, Alec becomes furious. He jumps out of his car and reaches for his gun, just as he is about to take steps towards them Alec hears his name being called, by Carlisle. They exchange some words about how neither one of them belong there, and each threaten to tell Antonio on the other. Carlisle sums up Alec's feelings and actions concisely "If you like my sister, just ask her out. At least it would be less messy... I think, anyway."

When we flash to the present Alec has flown down to Vegas to help clear up the situation. He meets Edward at a club and they eventually take off for the place that's going to be raided. Alec tells him he needs to clean up his appearance. Although he tried to look presentable by wearing a tie, his long hair, stubble and Nikes don't pull that presentable look off.

Chapter 3 Go Out on a Limb
This chapter starts with a flashback to May 1982. Alec is waiting outside of Esme's school. He's in a suit, on a high school campus, during a heat wave. He sticks out like a sore thumb, but stands his ground and waits for her. Esme is wearing a very skimpy outfit that Alec is sure her father wouldn't approve of. He doesn't approve either... well maybe just a little. Alec ends up sticking his foot in it again trying to ask her out. There is a bit of back and forth banter with him thinking she is saying no to going out with him, but Esme sets him straight. They end up having pie at a diner. Well Esme orders pie and a milkshake, when Alec tries to just order water she tells the waitress "He'll take some cherry pie, too. It won't kill him it's made out of fruit." when the waitress asks if he wants a milkshake Esme replies "No, he doesn't like ice cream. Or chocolate. Or even milk, really. So I guess you can still bring him the water." Alec is surprised she remembers all this about him. When he takes her home Esme tells Alec that he needs to stop doing what people tell him to do. That he needs to break the rules. She gets him to do exactly that, and the opposite, when he helps her sneak to her room to change before her dad sees her. She works him, and he loves it.

Back in Las Vegas Alec goes to the club with Edward, teaches him a little about respect then goes all bad ass on the guy running the club. He threatened the man's daughter (but would never really hurt her) and busts up all of the illegal activities that are happening. When Esme calls she is upset with Alec for not letting her know he was going out of town. She is upset by the work he does so the only she feels better is to know where he is. In her case no news is not good news. Alec feels terrible that she is upset and that's how we know he truly loves her, if it were anyone else he wouldn't feel a thing.

Chapter 4 Zero Tolerance
We're transported back to Phoenix, December 1970, Alec is 7 years old. His parents are fighting over money  and we get a clear picture of the messed up life he and his sister Jane lived through. It gives us really good insight into why those two end up the way they do. At the dinner table their mother is screaming at their father wanting more money. He tells her he already gave her money, she screams it's not enough. She knocks down a glass of wine and it spills all over, and also throws a tray of lasagna. Elizabeth is screamed at to clean it up. Getting on the floor she starts to dab the red wine with a white cloth. Alec knows she will get in trouble if it doesn't come out of the cloth. His father tells Elizabeth to throw it in the trash, bury it deep so it won't be found. Alec isn't surprised by this, he knows his father isn't a bad man. Before his dad leaves to head back to Chicago he gives Alec money to hide, just in case they need it. But his mom has other ideas and goes up to his room later and takes it from him. Their parents are a piece of work. His mother even tells him not to have a family or he'll screw them up just like his father did to them.

Back in Vegas Edward and Alec watch the club get 'cleaned' by the crew. On their way to get Benjamin from the casino Edward sees a teen prostitute being man handled by her pimp. He wants to step in, but Alec won't let him. He says there are more of her like that out there and he can't save them all. Alec asked Edward if Bella would be upset if he was hurt helping the girl, Edward's response is that she would be upset to know he didn't do a thing to help. Then lands a low blow "She's someones daughter." Those Cullens really know how to get under his skin. They get Benjamin from the casino, he's drunk and trying to bag himself a cougar. Alec wants to speak to Edward in the morning and Edward freaks.

Chapter 5 Blessing in Disguise
July 1972 Alec is 8 and they are in Forks. Jane is being a brat by the lake and calling Alec names when Esme shows up. She is nice to Alec and Jane but Jane is still being a brat. At the dinner table Alec thinks the Cullens are a strange family. They are nice to each other, pray before meals and no one screams. He learns that they are just like every other family when Jane taunts Esme into saying something mean and Mrs. Cullen punishes her children for being rude to their guests, even after Jane proves to be the instigator.

Back in the present in Vegas, Alec has picked up the teen prostitute. He's taken her out for pie at a diner. Alec gets her "price" and she is willing to do anything for $150 an hour. This little girl is clearly in over her head and has just made the craziest and best decision of her life. Driving through Vegas Alec asks about her life, she opens up about her sister and grandmother in California. Alec takes her to a casino hotel and parks his Mercedes. She is nervous but follows him out of the car anyway. When he crosses the street instead of heading into the hotel she is confused. Alec walks into a bus terminal and purchases a one way ticket to Bakersfield, California. She doesn't want to go, she keeps saying that "he" will kill her if she goes. Alec gets all bad ass on her and tells her it would be a shame if he ever ran into her sister that looks like her twin and her grandmother in Bakersfield, it would be a shame if their house caught on fire and the smoke detectors didn't work, such a shame. She is in tears and gets on the bus. Alec would never hurt the girl or her family but he knows the only thing she cares about more than her life is the lives of the only people that care about her. That is because he feels the same way about Esme. "There was a lot I'd kill for, but only one thing I'd willingly die for." Oh and I can't forget he has Benjamin take out the pimp.

Okay ladies comment away! And don't forget to come back next week.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Why Does Fanfic Make Me a Sentimental Fool?

We all know that I'm the go to girl when it comes to finding things in the fanfic world, right? Well I'm on a mission tonight to find something for BellaTesoro. And as I am on this extremely important, highly dangerous mission *hums the theme to Mission Impossible* I am going through my email account and the numerous amounts of attachments I have sent and received over the past 6 years that I've had this account.

I should be working on the EP post and I will... later... when I'm not sleeping... at midnight.

Okay back to my story. I'm looking through my attachments and what do I find? I find the exact date my life changed forever. Monday March 22, 2010! Before this date my attachments look something like this

Longstreet Paper
Psych Test
Charlemagne Paper
Econ Project
Edited Resume
Health Outline
Alzheimer's Paper
Econ Study Guide
Corrections Final Paper
Longstreet Paper Edited Version
Etc. Etc. Etc.

Starting 3/22/10
Eclipse Script
Oprah Posters
Letter to Rob
WFE Script
Memoirs (Remember Me) Script
Bel Ami Script
Wide Awake.pdf
More (shall not be named but if you really want to know email me ;)) fanfic pdf's

So I just want to say to those of you responsible for getting me here and keeping me coming back for more...

To Kristen: Thank you for lending me your Twilight books and for being the person to find the Eclipse script. And I cannot ever forget to thank you for taking me to Oprah and for introducing me to my bloggy partner in crime UAB Marie.
Who are these sexy bitches?

Yeah you got my ass there to see that shizzzzzz in person!
To UAB Marie: Thank you for posting my silly little letter to Rob. For welcoming me in to your RL home and bloggy home. For sharing so many wonderful experiences with me.
Remember that day UAB? I sure do! Ahhhh Papa C!!

To BellaTesoro: Thank you for being there when I need someone to talk to about not just fanfiction but other little problems I might have. Thank you soooo sooooo soooooooooo much for talking me through my anxieties about our trip to New York. For being crazy enough to fly to Chicago to meet up with not only me but Lisa, UAB, NHB and all the other girls (bc you clearly didn't fly all that way for Jackson naaaaahhhh lol).
This is the real reason you came to Chicago. Me and Capone! ;)

Look at us being all famous and stuff.
You're like the lead singer and I'm the drummer lol

To laureate04: Thank you for not thinking I was nuts in New York. For showing me the way to the Brotherhood. For being there to talk fanfiction, Brotherhood, whatever is on my mind. PS: We totes need to write some Brotherhood fanfiction.. no one else is doing it, why not us :)
Look at the range of expressions on these sleep deprived chicas!

To Robzie: Thank you for being one of the first bloggers to reply to a comment I made, when I was a newbie and extremely nervous wanting people to like me. Thank you for being you. You are wonderfully funny have mad skillz in the video editing department and are a great friend.
Wasn't this whole weekend the best? I love you two!!

To TongueTwied: Thank you for sharing in my Burn Notice and White Collar addictions. It really means a lot to me that you want to talk Burn Notice with me. Just like with Twilight no one in my RL wants to talk about my favorite TV shows with me. You could be doing far better things but you'll Tweet me your live reactions and I love it!
Thanks for helping me live in this fantasy world a little longer too!

To Naughty: Thank you for being crazy enough to meet up with some girls that you met during an online blog chat and taking the chance to meet me, UAB, Robzie and Kristen when we could have been serial killers pretending to be Twilight freaks ;) And a special thank you for hosting the *coughtoypartycough*
Let's get this crew and add some more for BD part 1.
We're gonna squee the walls down!

To Lisa: Thank you for sharing your first White Sox game with me. For also helping me through my anxieties about New York. Thank you for getting me to read MotU... one day I will read slash and I'll know it was because of you, ya dirty perv ;) Thank you for always being there. For sharing your epic adventures (whether I'm a part of them or not) and your undying love of Robsten.
We can't get enough of our Fifty, right Lisa?

To all my other friends that I haven't specifically mentioned: Thank you all for just being there. You have made this journey the most craziest, most bestest thing in my world. Without you all I swear I would have no life. Well I guess I technically don't, I'm like a step above a trekkie living in his parents basement playing with his light saber. The only parts of that equation that don't apply to me are the anatomical differences, I'm a Twihard, and I play with my Edward action figure(ewww get your mind out of the gutter, not that way lol).

I love you all and you have turned me into a sentimental fool!

EP Read Along

Hey girls. I had every intention of coming home from work today sitting down and writing the post on the Alec Novella. There just aren't enough hours in the day to finish everything we want to. I flaked. On the plus side, that gives you a whole extra week (just in case, like me, you didn't have enough time to read this week) to read the Alec story Public Enemy Number One: An EP Novella. I didn't want to do a half assed job and since I only work 2 days next week *YAY fist pump* I will be able to write something really good. Check back here Friday September 30th!


Friday, September 16, 2011

EP Outtakes

Welcome back to the outtakes. Feel free to discuss anything you found important from these passages in the comments.

Blood, Sweat and Tears (Carlisle POV)- Carlisle is in Chicago not as Dr. Cullen or father to three boys but as "Carlisle Cullen Consigliere to the Chicago Outfit". He visits with a woman he sees in Chicago for some 'relief'. After their time together he heads to Aro's place for an induction. After the induction Carlisle visits Elizabeth's grave and we get a bit more into his head when it comes to how he is not truly coping with her being gone.

Nonsense (Edward POV)- The kids all take a trip to the zoo. It's the first time Bella has been to a zoo. Emmett is being a big dork. Bella, Emmett, Alice and Jasper all ride on the carousel. It's a day of firsts for Bella. The singalong on the car ride, being to the zoo, riding a carousel, getting pulled over by the cops after their fun filled day. It's just a look into some of the fun they managed to have.

Expressions of Love (Edward POV)- Bella helps Jasper with Alice's birthday like how Alice helped Edward with setting up Valentines day. They have some fun times in the shower together and afterwards decide to watch a movie. When Bella throws in the DVD it isn't exactly what they are expecting. Edward ends up having to explain to Bella that what happens in porn isn't exactly real... it's kinda funny.

The Beginning and the End (Elizabeth POV)- This is basically the whole story summed up in a short chapter from Elizabeth's point of view. It goes from the first time she met Bella to bringing Edward to Phoenix and Bella giving him a 'kiss'. All the way to her desperately trying to get Bella out. She digs for information, begs Alec for help. But Elizabeth is on her own in the journey to setting Bella free, she ends up pushing too far and the chapter ends in her murder.

Hurt (Edward POV)- Edward is being interrogated after the shoot out. He claims to know nothing but they press for answers anyway. During the questioning it comes out that Aro is still alive and Edward starts to freak out. After finally being released he goes home and drinks his pain away. Then we relive the funeral though Edwards eyes.

Principessa (Edward POV)-

  • Edward freaks at the doctors office then again during the ultrasound.
  • Edward gets a cat.
  • Emmett want to name their daughter (Emmitina or Emmitricia or Emmart or Emmarty or even simply Emma) he was bound and determined so he called Bella and mentioned the name Emily too.
  • Edward has an adventure at Wal-mart looking for Ben and Jerry's Carrot Cake ice cream.
  • Edward runs an errand for Alec.
  • Edward's Wal-mart adventure turns into a bust when the ice cream melts during his 'errand'.
  • Edward and Bella go shopping at Babies R Us.
  • Bella goes into labor and has a normal delivery.
  • Edward and Bella name the baby girl Elizabeth Brianna
Four years later

Little C is seven and staying with Edward and Bella. A four year old Libby is the spitting image of her father with his same finicky tendencies. They have another little girl Gianna Marie.  Edward nicknamed his daughters piccola and sole mio just like Elizabeth had for him.

They head to a family get together in Forks. The family gets together every year and this year they went to Jasper's house. There are many adorable moments including Elizabeth holding her hand out to Alec and asking "Monies? Please." with wide eyes. He hands her a five dumbfounded as to why he gave her money. Edward laughs telling Alec he was just taken by a four year old. Alec's response "Unbelievable. Only your
child would be brave enough to try to extort money from me."

Edward and Bella get to spend their time together in the room where it all started, with their two daughters and the rest of their family nearby they get their 'happily ever after'.

See you next week for the Alec Novella!

Friday, September 9, 2011

EP Read Along Week 27 Chapters 79-Epi

EP Read Along Week 28 Chapters 79-Epilogue
Ciao mia bella tesoros. Here we are the ending chapters. I know we have a few more weeks to finish up with some delicious outtakes, but these chapters were “Fine-The End” ones. Once again, they are huge chapters and so it will be difficult to summarize them into small portions, but I did my best.
For my part, this will be the last review/summary I write for this. And I want to take a minute to thank both Marie and Kassie for taking my love for EP, sharing it with me, and allowing me to express my devotion to it by creating this re-read along. It was great revisiting with finicking, adorable, delicious Edward in the land of mafiaward.
 You are both the very best, real life tesoro for sure for giving me a place to do that. Well let’s get on with it, we’re in for just a teeny bit of bittersweet angst, lessons learned the hard way, some much needed happy times, and some hot steamy lemons mafiaward style!  
Chapter 79 “Forever” EPOV (the last regular chapter)
The chapter starts off at Esme and Alec home as the family continues to reminisce about Carlisle. Edward is fascinated as he watches and listens to Bella as she nervously, yet boldly speaks up and tells the story about how Carlisle helped her during her darkest moments. She tells how it helped her when he promised Bella that if and when she was ready, he would take her to Chicago and to Edward. Edward listens to her and realizes she’s grown, become a confident women and that his leaving her allowed all this growth to happen. Isn’t it just like Edward to find this new side of Bella sexy?
Edward still feels guilty about bringing Bella into this world again and as he’s about to leave to go home alone, Alec brings him down a beg once again. Alec rips into him telling him he has no respect for his family, treating them like they don’t matter and to stop being so selfish that his family is hurting right now. Edward yells at Alec that Alec is to blame for his family’s hurt because he killed Carlisle. Alec gets so pissed at him for that disrespect and lets him know that the only reason he doesn’t shoot him is because his family is already in pain.  Alec tells him to get a grip and man up. He lets Edward know he needs to stop obsessing and worrying that Aro will retaliate and go after his family.  Alec says that Edward insults him and doesn’t he know it’s Alec’s job to protect his family not Edwards. He even says that Edward is insignificant, that if Aro and company wanted him dead they would just get him. If Bella and his family were being placed in harms way because of Edward Alec would never have let them near him. Notice he doesn’t say Edward is safe though!
Edward goes back and finds Bella talking with his brothers. She looks so happy when she sees Edward and I love what he says; “...her eyes sparkled with happiness. My heart nearly stilled at the sight, and it took everything I had in me not to fall to my goddamn knees right there and beg her to always fucking look at me that way. I wanted to plead with her to never stop loving me, for her to forgive me for everything I ever did wrong, even the shit she didn’t know about and never would...” He doesn’t know that she all ready has forgiven him, dumb shit that he is! They all banter like old times, teasing each other. They get on Edward’s case for his drinking and drug use and even mention “Molly” which Bella thinks is a woman. He later explains to her what Molly is and that he hasn’t been with any woman since her. He tells her that Bella is the reason he was able to stop using drugs and how Alec made him hear how well she was doing, that she’d done what he’d asked, gone out and lived freely. And that it was time he held up to his part of the deal to be fine too so Bella could be proud of him as well.  Bravo Edward! Edward tells her that not even drugs could bring him the happiness he had on that Valentine’s day, and it’s that happiness he was trying to feel again using drugs, but couldn’t find any peace without her.
Edward watches Bella feel Rosalie’s belly and he gets jealous. He knows he can’t have the cliche family because of his life style. He wants the normal that his brothers have, he wants to be able to give Bella what he promised her before he initiated, all the babies she’d want. Esme asks Bella if she wants kids and Edward hears her say she’s not sure anymore, that there are so many kids out there already that need homes. Esme shares with her that she’d thought once about adopting too.
Edward and Bella spend some time together getting reacquainted. They end up going back to Edward’s house. Bella looks at her painting hanging on his wall and asks her what he thinks it means. It’s not surprising that he’d think it’s about his crazy ass life. But she informs him it’s about “The Best Day of Her Life.” Valentine’s Day and the music he played for her, the red roses twisted together represents the first time they made love and the haze was steamy romantic feelings he made her feel. Perfect representation, right?
Even though there was so much in these chapters that are “heavy” Khar  manages to get some Edward funny in too. For example, when Bella says you’re still the Edward Cullen I remember, the one I love. And Edward asks her to say it again, but “this time add “fucking” to it because that shit was hot.” Got to love Edward and his naughty self.
Bella asks Edward to tell him what he’s been doing and he doesn’t want to because he thinks she’ll be ashamed of him and she’ll not see the real Edward anymore and run away. She tells him to stop making decisions for her, that she’s not going to run away and nothing he tells her will change how she feels about him. He tells her he hasn’t “killed” anyone but that when he looks in the mirror he sees all the people he’s hurt and how awful a person he is. She tells him he has no choice but to do those bad things in order to have saved her.
Edward is called away and Bella stays and waits for him.  Poor Edward, he gets dragged into these situations by Alec without any information. He’s required to just follow Alec into this run down house, no gun, and he thinks Alec is about to kill him. Now why couldn’t Alec give Edward a heads up, let him know they were about to bring Aro down?! It’s no wonder Edward freaks out, he’s always so unprepared to deal with the horror that’s forced on him. That’s just what happens. Alec planned the whole thing to get revenge on Aro for all his past evil. Alec’s plan works, they leave wounded Aro for the rats to finish him off. The rat story, yuck. He got what he deserved though, right?!
Edward asks Alec why he shot his father and Alec explains that Carlisle was going to die anyway, and he did it to save Carlisle from killing himself. Alec and Carlisle believe that suicide would prevent you from going to heaven, and he wanted Carlisle to be in heaven where Elizabeth would be waiting for him. He told Edward that his father and he, believe that in order to be forgiven for your sins you have to be remorseful, repent, and Carlisle was trying to do that his whole life especially his end plans. I think that’s the Catholic way, to repent and sins are forgiven. I can see that Edward is like this as well. He hates what he has to do, he tries to make it up to those he hurts in order to be forgiven.
 Alec tells Edward how Carlisle had it all planned, how he did it all to protect his family, every single thing he did was for his family’s safety especially Edward’s. So looks like Alec and Carlisle are the heros in all this. Still, I wanted more. As I’ve said, I wanted Carlisle to get Edward away from that life, free, to lead a “normal” life like his brothers and he just couldn’t do that.
After Aro gets wiped out, all the mob bosses get together and vote Alec in as head of the family now. Alec tells Edward that although this looks like they all have a say in this and vote him in, they in fact don’t. His bad ass self just took control over this mess and decided to clean house and get “the family” back to it’s ‘honorable’ roots. Alec calmly takes the rein as everyone fears and looks up to the man who practically single handedly brings down Aro’s band of mobsters and is now in charge of the Chicago mob family.
After yet another massacre shoot out, reliving Carlisle’s death,  and mob boss drama, Edward is completely falling to pieces. He’s so overwhelmed but the minute he goes home and finds Bella there, waiting for him, he realizes he could survive this as long as she’s there with him. He’s thinks that her peace, hope, her goodness would over power the ugliness that was and will continue to eat away at him.  She tells him again she won’t run from him and he promises never to leave her again.
Did you not melt when Bella asks Edward if he’d been crying, and he replies, “Maybe...” and she comforts him as only Bella can. Poor Edward.
They kiss and he asks if she still feels the electricity between them and she does of course. He tells her he needs her and she says she’ll be there as long as he wants her and he says “Sempre...”
The hormonal Edward who hasn’t “gotten laid” in almost two years wants Bella badly but she slows things down saying they’re not ready for the physical part of being together yet. And so they just take it slow, snuggle up together like they used to back in their Fork’s bubble, warm and safe in each other’s arms. Did you like Edward’s new swan tattoo that he can’t even remember getting? Bella did.
It’s time to read Carlisle’s will but before they do Alec talks to Edward. Esme indicates she had something to do with what Alec has planned for Edward’s future. Go Esme! She says she likes it when she gets her way, meaning she had something to do with Alec’s plans for Edward! I do too in this case. First Alec reminds Edward that La Cosa Nostra comes first and he’s swore to that life and there isn’t anything Alec can do about that. Edward agrees and will honor his commitment. But Alec goes on to say he realizes Edward isn’t made out to lead this violent life style, he’s not good at it.  You, think Alec?! He says that since he’s most like his mother he’d never survive this life but he does want him to succeed somehow. So he’s found something important for Edward to handle for him. Alec asks Edward what he thinks about moving to the southwest to take charge of his gambling business, be the middle-man. Alec needs someone he can trust, and Edward says he can trust him to do the job. Alec wants him to think about it and talk it over with Bella first. I think it’s a good solution, right? Even if the brat in me, still wants Edward completely out of the family business but, this important role gets him out of the most of the dangerous stuff anyway.
The chapter ends with the reading of Carlisle’s will. He leaves a beautiful letter of apology to his family, and leaves them each appropriate items. It brought a tear to my eye as he writes he knew Rosalie was having a baby and how sorry he is he won’t be around to be a grandfather. The house in Forks should go to Jasper and that he’d make a wonderful doctor, and the ring to Edward and how noble Edward is and that he is so proud of him. Of course the most tears was  brought on by the note to Bella, “You were worth it.”
This is why I loved Carlisle, he really was so broken himself, tried to do the best he could to save his family from the life he led, and he tried to make Elizabeth proud by righting some of the wrongs in his life.  What was Carlisle’s most shining moment?

Chapter 80 “Addiction” BPOV and EPOV
This is a VERY long part 1 Epi but here goes...
It is now two years after Carlisle’s death. They are still in Chicago and Bella is complaining because Edward insists she be chauffeured around for her safety. Bella agrees to some of his obsessive requests because she knows it brings him some peace of mind. Bella realized early on that Edward was addicted to alcohol and drugs, using them as a crutch to hide from the pain in his life, and she doesn’t want to become one more crutch for him. So she takes things slow to allow them both to heal in a healthy way. And it seems as if it’s been working. Edward has been going to AA meetings and Bella is going to school. Their life has some normalcy to it.
I loved the scene when Bella comes home and finds a small child wrapped around Edward’s body. I loved that visual of Edward as a daddy, cuddled up with their child.  Didn’t you just think it was theirs at first? It’s Emmett’s, Little C and Bella and Edward are his godparents. It was Little Carlisle’s birth that made Edward realize he needed help with his addiction, he wanted to be someone he could look up to. It was fun watching Edward babysit especially during the shower sex scene when they were interrupted by a crying child. Edward says, “You know, this shower sex shit is fucking sexy in porn.” and Bella says everything’s sexy in porn even (she means the “other” kind of kinky act)...and Edward perks up and says, “Fuck, do you want to try that next, tesoro?” And the new, independent Bella says no she’ll pass. Again, shows an example how Edward is still Edward and Bella has grown up and has her own voice. It’s nice to see Edward’s lighter side again. He teases her about not mind “eating out” and  “eating her out” every night is something he’d never get tired of. She calls him a pervert and Edward loves how he can still make her blush. I also loved the fortune cookie scene, how Edward plays the game his brothers used to by saying the fortune and ending it with “in bed.” I tried that myself and it was funny, my husband didn’t get why I thought that was a cool game, but now every time I read a fortune I have to add Edward’s version to it.
We find out that Esme and Alec adopt Chelsea the young girl Bella helped out in CA. Edward and Emmett cheating at Candyland was funny and showed that B/E have gotten some of their fun family times back again. Edward is dressed up in shoes and suited up the way Alec expects his men to look, as he and Emmett take a business trip before the wedding.  Rosalie, Alice, and even Emily take Bella out for a bachelorette party at Alec’s club. Bella drinks Patron shots with the girls and they discuss how hot Alec and Edward are, even Rosalie finally admitting that Edward has grown up and she likes him now. They drink and toast to Bella and Bella drinks to “freedom.” The girls think that attaching herself in marriage is losing freedom. But Bella says, it’s not ironic toasting to freedom the night she’s about to get married because if it weren’t for Edward, she’d never know what real freedom was.
The next scene begins my other favorite part to this story, the wedding. Here Bella is looking at herself and remembering her mother and how she would be happy and proud of her as all her dreams are coming true. Rosalie is matron of honor, go figure that it would be her and not Alice. But they’d gotten close since being together in Chicago.
Alec is giving Bella away and he tells her that he once told Carlisle that he couldn’t see Bella as a principessa della mafia. That she didn’t look like one of them, but now he sees he was wrong. Look at Alec getting a little emotional. Alec leads Bella down the aisle to Edward looking handsome as ever when Bella teases him about wearing Nike’s, perfectly Edward, right? They say their vows but Edward hesitates when asked if they will accept children, he still doesn’t want to bring kids into his crazy world I guess. Bella recites vows she made up and one of the things she says is that Edward gave her hope, he believed in her. Of all the people in the world, he picked her. She’d been used to being overlooked, invisible but he saw her. I just love those lines. Isn’t what we all seek, to be picked, to be seen, and to be valued? And it’s an important theme in this story, along with the redemption, freedom, and most of all choices we make.
“I see you Tesoro, you are Worth It”

Then it’s Edward’s turn and he says how from the minute they bumped into each other on the kitchen floor she stole his heart right from his chest and that she saved him. That although it may be unhealthy, he needs her to make it, and then he blurts out “Christ, and curses more says shit..and then Little C starts yelling out and repeating the curses after Edward. Well it wouldn’t be Edward without some naughty words, even in church. Cute when Bella just puts her hand over Edward’s mouth so he doesn’t continue to make matters worse. I gets that’s what Bella does best, she helps Edward not make matters worse.
Edward’s wedding point of view is the best. How some have things changed! Jasper says he can’t believe he’d be at his little brother’s wedding drinking grape juice and no liquor. This of course gets on Edward’s nerves, he’s on edge as it is, not liking events and all those people around. Poor Edward and his anxieties and now he can’t even have a drink to help soothe his craving.  Instead Bella pulls him out of it, by just being herself  He’d like nothing more than to go back to drinking his Grey Goose. He’s struggling but he remembers how ashamed of himself he was, being arrested on felony charges caught with a gun. He doesn’t want to return to that out of control person.   But the best part of the whole dam wedding, and the best written wedding speech ever, and just fit this perfectly, was Emmett’s sports analogy. He decribes Edward perfectly; “he’s stubborn, foolish, finicky, moody, erratic, quick to judge, and even quicker to react...foul mouth, protective, and extremely selfless and sacrifices when he thinks it’s for the best, even when he doesn’t want to.” I won’t repeat the speech here, but it’s worth everyone re reading it because it’s wonderful how he gets Edward and Bella’s personalty and gives words of wisdom while being out loud funny. And it can apply to real life too.
Edward dances with Bella to “18th Floor Balcony” and romantically sings in her ear. He marvels how happy Bella looks and he’s so proud that HE was the one who made her happy. Doesn’t get better than that.
So adorable when Edward apologizes for messing up the ceremony by cursing and Bella says he didn’t really. He managed not to say the F word for only the second time in his life.
So here is the scene that brought me to tears, blubbery like a fool. Jasper asks Edward what possessed him to have a big traditional  wedding.  Emmett agrees that a big Catholic wedding is so not Edward or Bella’s style. His reply is just one more reason Khar’s writing blows me away. Brilliant: Edward says that Bella would have been happy to elope in Vegas. Or they could have had a private family one. But that he couldn’t let something she’d dreamed about her whole life take place in a Vegas drive through or something small and intimate because: ”It was my idea to have the big wedding, though. Nothing about us is traditional and I wanted to at least do this, have this one thing, so we could say we did this shit right.  And quite frankly, I wanted the whole world to see it happening. I wanted every motherfucker we ever met to watch us get married. She spent her entire life in hiding, thinking people were ashamed of her and that she was worthless. I wanted her to be seen.” That right there was deep and so meaningful to the story. And made me sad to think Edward felt like that, that they didn’t have that “normal” part of them, and he wanted to make up to Bella and show the world how normal they really were for this one special moment...I don’t know it just touched me deeply that Edward would give her every thing he could to try to make it up to her. To give her a piece of the traditional “normal” life event. Did you feel a tug on your heart too? How about when Edward asked Chelsea to dance and then made her feel special calling her Sole, and what it means to him. I think he sees a little of Bella in her. Oh how Edward has grown up! Isn’t he just a wonderful man now? But I still feel so badly for him, he’s still struggling and I hate that. Do you see it like that?
Alec pulls Edward into a mini initiation meeting. He says when he agreed to “give her away” he was really handing her over to Edward. He  had to vouch for her and now Edward is responsible for his wife’s allegiance to the family. I guess this is one more example of Alec being able to trust Edward.

This chapter ends with the honeymoon on the 18th floor of a beautiful hotel. Edward plays Clair de Lune on a piano as Bella enters looking very sexy. Edward charms her as only he can. The love scene is as beautifully written as the Valentine Day one, yes? At one point he moans out “La mia bella ragazza” but then changes it to “bella donna” because “You’re all woman now, tesoro.” And isn’t that the truth. 

So I loved that during their passionate love scene Edward says, “Tell me you love me.” and she does. Then he asks, “Tell me who you belong to.” and she says “Me.” “I belong to no one but me.” and Edward replies, “That’s my girl.” Another brilliantly written detail.
Next Bella decides what she wants to do is burn down the Swan home and barn. Edward can’t deny her anything so he agrees even after he realizes it’s probably not a good idea. They burn it down which puts some closure for Bella about her past.
Last scene has Edward sitting outside their home outside Vegas. Edward is making an AA list of all the people he feels he’s wronged so he can make amends to them. Bella looks at his long list and tells him he’s being too hard on himself. She tries to defend him by pointing out he did what he had to do in self-defense.
They describe their home as being like their bubble in forks. Bella picked it out. It’s a place they can be isolated from his job in Vegas and just be themselves. They talk about their future, Edward might take music classes and  she could teach painting and he’d build her an art studio. He tells her he’d do anything for her. They talk about building a new home, with a pool, room for entertaining new friends and having the family over. They seem at peace with this new life they are talking about. Their sanctuary , their form of normal and a place away from the part of his life he’s forced to live.

 And the chapter ends with one of their funny bantering as they talk about silly pets they could get when Bella blurts out,”Okay, not pets, how about a baby?” He tells her ok, if that’s what she wants. She tells him she’s pregnant. With the wedding and all, she forgot to take all her pills. He teases her that the poor baby will have half of his DNA, and per Edward, says "Poor little fucker." Then it's so cute when it dawns on him and he says "We're going to have a baby, Tesoro." He worries he won't be a good father and Bella reassures him he will be. If she can withstand slavery and he the mafia, together they could survive parenthood. He knows she's right and that they will be ok. That Isabella's goodness would counter any bad they have. That she is his peace, his safe place to be him, and that together they would be happy because it would be worth it. 

And as sweet as this ending is, it still left me melancholy. It just seems bitter sweet, not a complete Happy Ever After. How about you did you think they had a HEA?

Epilogue 2 BPOV
This was a short chapter where Bella explains about sacrifice and how it’s something we all do in life. Everyone giving something up for others, letting go even when you’d rather not. She repeats the nothing ventured nothing gained quote from Jasper via Elizabeth. That if one didn’t even try nothing would ever change. She tells about the ugly facts about slave trade and how many different forms of slavery there is even today.
Bella talks about how Elizabeth knew that just surviving wasn’t good enough. That you had to strive to make the world a better place by sacrificing. That Schweitzer quote “my life is my example” that what we say is less important than what we do. So Bella’s life, Elizabeth, Carlisle’s and anyone else who sacrificed to help someone, couldn’t help themselves, it was who they were. Bella gives examples of the slaves she knew, Maggie, and then “Nonna” who became like a grandmother to the Cullen boys. They all had their stories, they weren’t only slaves, they were just people with hopes and dreams and fears like everyone else. That what Edward once told her was true, that what other people call them or see them as doesn’t define them. That They made themselves who they really were.
Bella explains their life wasn’t perfect, or fairytale like. They didn’t have that happy ever after I was looking for for them. Because happy endings were just unfinished stories. That life went on and as long as they pushed on they wouldn’t lose, because they could never turn their backs on what mattered.
Bella thinks that it wasn’t Carlisle that freed Elizabeth, but she herself did through her children. By loving them, sacrifice, nurturing three charming boys into protective men and the world was a better place because they were in it. Even Edward was a good man, that it didn’t matter how people judged him and even though she did not like some of the things he did, he was a man of honor.
Bella understands now what Emancipation Proclamation really means, it means being able to choose your burden in life. Finding something worth living and fighting for and taking a risk for it. She says that when she and Edward said their vows they weren’t sacrificing, they were choosing their burdens together and that had been the moment Edward had actually set her free, her Emancipation Proclamation.
When I wrote to Kharizzmatik once and asked her if she’d please consider writing a HEA for Edward/Bella, freeing him of the mafia world because the way I saw it, Bella could never truly be free if Edward wasn’t. And part of me still believes this. Khar however, repeated what I just wrote here. That Edward, Carlisle, and Bella along with all the characters and all of us in real life, choose our burdens yet find a way to make it work, make our happiness in spite of our choice of burdens. And that everyone gets to have the HEA that decide it to be. And I guess she’s right. And there is the lesson in this story. I loved it, all of it, the angst, the humor, the life lessons. I even loved Alec the man of honor but scary as hell.
So come on, tell me what you liked, didn’t like, agreed with or not, what would you have liked to see as an ending, or did like Khar say, see this as a HEA?
Alla Fine
The End
To all Mia Bella Donna’s out there,
you are forever my tesoros.

Come back next week to discuss the outtakes. The Alec Novella will be the following week.

Friday, September 2, 2011

EP Read Along Week 26 Chapters 76-78

Wow 26 weeks and we're still not finished! EP is a journey that we are so happy to take with you all, so buckle up these chapters are gonna be a bumpy ride.

Chapter 76 Bella POV- *18 months later*

We meet a new character Emily. She is a new friend of Bella's that is simply filling the roles of all the people she had once called her family back in Forks. Bella is still hung up on Edward but is trying to move forward and Emily is at her side while she does it. This chapter is chock full of flashbacks, some major some not.

First flashback *January 07*- We get a glimpse back to when Bella first moves from Forks to Seattle with Jasper. She is struggling to stay sane but it all comes to a breaking point. Bella isn't sleeping and has a vision of Edward. She thinks he is there with her in Jasper's apartment in Seattle. Believing he has appeared to her and is in need of some comfort she takes off after him. Hopping a cab to the airport Bella plans on going to Chicago, but she is so out of it from her lack of sleep that security approaches her. Bella faints and when she finally comes to Jasper arrives to take her home. He asks Bella if she has given up without even trying to have a life like Edward wants for her. Bella slips into her room and finally lets the exhaustion take over. When she awakes later Carlisle and Jasper are discussing what to do. Carlisle comes to Bella and explains to her that she doesn't need Edward. Whether she chooses to be with him or not and whether he chooses to have a relationship with her or not are not what she should focus on. She should focus on herself and having a life so she would know exactly the kind of life she'd be giving up to be with Edward who is having his every move controlled by La Cosa Nostra. The last thing Edward wanted was for her to go from being controlled under the Cullen roof to being controlled under the scrutiny of 'the family'. Carlisle does tell Bella that if she chooses to be with Edward, after he's had time to settle into his new role as a member of 'the family', he would help her get to Chicago "even if it's the last thing I do."

Second flashback *June 07*- Bella is sitting in the park after her last art class clutching a letter to Edward. She is approached by a man named "Joe" who we find out is Special Agent Joseph DiFronzo with the U.S. Department of Justice. He is trying to gather intel on Bella, tries to coerce her into giving him her letter by offering to drop it in the mail box, taking her empty water bottle and offering to throw it away, borrows her phone to make a 'quick call'. Before he can leave Carlisle shows up gets the water bottle back and in no uncertain terms tells "Joe" to leave Bella the hell alone and tells Bella he will take care of the situation.

Back to the present we finally learn that Bella is in California and is displaying some paintings at an art show. She is unnerved by a man there, Seth Clearwater. The show goes by in a blur and she can't find Emily. Seth offers to buy one of Bella's paintings, she is still nervous when she leaves the show. After arriving home to find that someone is upstairs basically ransacking her place Bella runs out and calls Alec. He tells her to stay somewhere safe for the night and that he will fly out to her ASAP.

After Alec does his initial survey of the situation he decides to get Bella a security system, tells her she has to ditch the Volvo, and ultimately lets her stay. We have a Seth/Alec run in and it seems Seth is just enamored with Bella and not a threat, but Alec threatens him to stay away regardless. Emily shows up all hot and bothered for Alec and thinks she recognizes him from somewhere. When she finally puts two and two together she confronts Bella and their friendship is basically over because Bella won't discuss Alec or her past.

Chapter 77 Edward POV
The chapter begins with Edward waiting for Emmett and Rosalie's wedding to start. He is nervous thinking Bella might show up and asks Esme is Alec is back in time for the wedding, or if he's still with her. We get a flashback of Edward trailing Alec after his initial call from Bella. Tracking a hit man, probably not the smartest idea in the world, but we're talking Edward here. Alec turns down a random street and gets into it with Edward. He threatens to kill Edward for disobeying an order but instead of shooting Edward, Alec shoots out his tires so Edward can't follow him. Because it's none of his business where Alec goes whether it's to help Bella or not, it's not his concern. We get back to the present and the ceremony goes off without a hitch. Edward is still drinking trying to numb the pain of being alone. Emmett admits that Rosalie is pregnant and Edward is actually happy for them. Alec arrives with a gift for the newlyweds from Bella. It's lingerie and a vibrator!

Edward walks back home from the party and has a heart to heart with Carlisle. For the first time Carlisle opens up about his drug and alcohol use after their mother died, and Edward finally tells him about the night of her shooting. Although it may not seem like it, Edward is truly growing up but like Carlisle says he is hiding behind booze, drugs, and profanity. Edward receives a call from Alec telling him to be at Aro's place in 30 minutes so he leaves his dad but not before Carlisle tells him he loves Edward. There is a sense that something is going to happen that Edward can't shake. He tells Carlisle he loves him too. They both say their goodbyes and Edward hesitates before leaving.

Edward hops in his car and takes off for Aro's place. When he arrives it all becomes clear. Something is wrong, Carlisle is ordered to be taken out and Aro wants Edward to do it. Edward of course is freaking out and Alec seems all cool with the idea of offing Carlisle which makes Edward freak out more. But it seems that Alec has plans of his own.

Jessica Stanley shows up at Edward's house looking to talk to him. Her and Rosalie had become friends while taking a class together at Notre Dame. Jessica showing up isn't much but it leads Edward to study his painting more closely. He realizes it's from Bella and decides to look for her. He manages to make it to Oakland where she was living. She is gone from there now. After receiving a call from Alec, Edward heads straight back to Chicago where Alec fucks him up and explains to him that he put Bella in danger by going to her and it's a good thing she wasn't there because 'people' are looking for her, the same 'people' looking for his father.

When Edward got back home he was to attend a wedding party for the mafia. He had planned on only making an appearance and leaving. When he tried to do that Aro told him to stay. Alec seemed nervous about this, but wouldn't let Edward go. Aro, Alistar, Edward and Alec all went out on the back patio to discuss Alistar's problem with Edward when out of nowhere Carlisle comes strolling up in an all black suit.

We finally find out what Carlisle has been up to. He's been really only biding his time so he could come after Aro. Aro had been a busy busy boy and killing Carlisle was the last piece he needed to cover up all his deeds. Let's run them down shall we?

Aro kills his sister Dydamie and her husband Marcus because Marcus was supposed to be boss after Antonio Cullen passed.
Aro has Stephan sell Renee (Bree) to the Swans for them to raise her as their own but that didn't pan out.
Aro had Elizabeth killed by Alistar because she was getting too close to the truth about Bella and Renee
Aro refuses to help Edward find Bella because she is the final link to what he has done and with her dead he's sitting pretty.
I'm concerned I missed something but I think that about covers it. I mean besides almost getting Edward killed the day of his mothers shooting and then ordering Carlisle be killed.

There is a shoot out. Aro wants Edward to kill his father. Carlisle blows Alistars head off. More mafia members file out to shoot at Carlisle. Alec is holding Edward to the ground so he won't get killed. After Carlisle mows down five more mafiosi he is about to kill himself when Alec steps in and shoots him, so Carlisle can get into heaven.

Edward is distraught after what he had just witnessed. He is concerned about what he is going to tell his brothers and Esme and is still confused as to what all happened. The police show up and take Alec into custody. Agent DiFronzo walks up to Edward and offers his condolences, at first Edward can't believe it but when the Agent explains that his dad wasn't all bad and that he was really actually sorry, Edward says "Yeah... me, too."

Chapter 78 Bella POV
Bella is recounting what happened after her and Emily's last phone call. Alec came to California told her to pack and go anywhere, stop driving when she felt safe. He told her that Seth was paid to find her, most likely on Alistar's dime because she is the only person that could identity him as being a part of the kidnapping. So that is what Bella did. That trip took her from the west coast of America all the way to the east coast. Bella drove alone and not once felt safe enough to stay. While in North or South, she couldn't remember which, Carolina Bella was having breakfast at a diner when she heard the news about Carlisle's death. Numb from the shock she called Alec and left him a voice mail telling him her destination... Chicago.

When Bella finally arrived in town the next day she swung by Edwards house to find him. She ran into Leah who told Bella he was with his family. After running to Esme and Alec's house and speaking with Clara, Bella decides to head to Mt Carmel Cemetery where the burial would be held.

Bella was hesitant at first to even get close to the burial so she stood off to the back and watched. After Carlisle was in the ground and everyone had left they finally saw each other for the first time in two years. Bella ran to Edward and they fell to the ground crying and holding on to each other.

Edward was happy Bella was there but was still talking about her leaving and living her life. After some arguing back and forth Bella laid it all out there "You wanted me to have a life… how could you not see that you were my life?". She points out that he really took all of her options away from her because even though she could go on to school, work, date... all of it would never mean anything to her without Edward in her life. It also didn't mean anything to her when she could never be real to the people in her life, she would always be hiding her past from them. The time away helped Bella realize these things and her becoming a stronger person because of it. And I think her new strength is what finally helped Edward realize that her life could be everything he wanted, with him.

Back at the Evanson house people are telling stories about the good times with Carlisle. Bella speaks up to tell a story about him too. It was a surprise to most in attendance that had no idea she would be there. The story she told was the time when he had spoken to her the night in Seattle when she had her breakdown at the airport. The biggest impact of her story is when she said “I know he thought he would have to break his promise to me, but the truth is that he didn't, because Carlisle did exactly what he said he would. Now that I'm finally ready, he helped me find my way home. I just wish it hadn't really been the last thing he did.”

Maybe Edward and Bella are both finally ready to start again.

I can't forget to mention that when Fran was in town we made a little trip to Mt Carmel Cemetery with 17foreverlisa and DoubleDippin. Did you know Al Capone is buried there? In EP this is the final resting place for Elizabeth and Carlisle Cullen.

Don't forget (like you'd actually forget after 26 weeks of this lol) to come back next week for the final 2 chapters and epilogue. Again here's the break down:
September 9- Chapters 79-Epi 
September 16- Outtakes  
September 23- The Alec Novella 

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