Question Of Mortality
Edward Cullen imagine requested by anon! “Yo what up… could you pretty please write an imagine where the reader decides not to turn, Edward wasn’t pressuring her at all, but she concludes that she’s happy with this one life. And he completely supports her and promises to love her till she dies. Literally. And it’s just so fluffy, with lots of kisses and the most gentlemanly Edward. But like a little angst cuz that’s like a huge decision. Basically I’d like for her to remain human,but still love Edward more than anything. Thanks babe!” Hope you like it!
WARNING: This imagine alludes briefly (and mostly in vague reference) to Edward’s Volterra plans in the fashion of the first chapters of New Moon.
It wasn’t presented as a question, the lack or presence of your fragile mortality; Edward had been very careful with his wording when the subject was brought to your attention. With his hands in his lap, slender fingers toying with a fraying strand of denim that had separated from the edge of a tear at your crossed knee, he had spoken of your upcoming birthday. His butterscotch eyes had remained on the fabric, feigning unfathomable intrigue as he casually inquired as to what you might be wanting on such a spectacular occasion as the anniversary of your birth. It was unlike him to avoid your eye when he spoke; he was very much in love with your eyes, and continuously brought up their otherworldly beauty, sounding very much the Romeo type as he sang their praises. He exaggerated frequently. Still, he voiced his supposedly absentminded (though he rarely ever acted without first thinking) reminder of your aging body, without once meeting your eye, and allowed his simple words to begin their workings within your head. When you were quiet, he lifted his gaze, his golden eyes wandering over your face before finally locking on yours. His face was nearly empty of all emotion, vulnerable in the simplicity of his expression, waiting for you to set the mood. When he spoke, he spoke with a voice just supported enough to reach your ears, his velvet tone carried to your heart on a whisper, his lips curling in a sideways grin.
“Don’t even try to tell me you don’t want a present. You ought to be celebrated. Another year alive, especially considering the company you keep, is no small feat.” You dropped your gaze, watching as Edwards hand slipped seamlessly to your palm, his fingers lacing with yours. His temperature was noticeably cooler than your own, glinting dimly as the evening sunlight shone through the glass that stood as his fourth wall. You traced your fingertips along the backside of his hand, running over bone that had calcified and strengthened a century ago, over skin that was impenetrable by any means other than the teeth of his immortal enemies. You flipped his hand over, detaching yourself from him save the contact you kept with your fingers, tracing along the smooth lines of his palm, winding down to his wrist, and pausing briefly where his pulse ought to be. You found no such beating, no telltale thrumming of life… and yet he sat before you as mobile and lively as any regular man. Edward’s perceptive eyes, amplified by the venom that coursed through his system, caught your hesitation, noting the location your fingertips had lingered just a second longer than they had the rest of his hand. He pursed his lips, his eyes calling out for your own and receiving no reaction. “Still don’t have one, I’m afraid,” he whispered, speaking cautiously. When next you spoke, you spoke without hesitation, a burning question on your mind screaming with all intensity to be heard aloud.
“Do you want me to be turned?” He froze, as only a vampire could, his hand resting in your palm more like a fragmented statue than a man. Your eyes found his, finding his face unchanged, remaining blank to avoid pushing you in one direction or the other. He was as neutral as they came, Switzerland in the flesh, his snowy skin and frigid temperature further proof. Your silence clung to the air like dewdrops on grass, your words hanging in uncharted territory, untouched by man, beast, and everything in between. Your breath polluted the air like carbon, lingering heavily, suffocatingly, in the space between your chests. “Edward, do you want me to become a vampire?” You repeated, your choice words allowing no misinterpretation. He thawed slightly at the word, but he didn’t move to speak. Again, you tried for an answer, hoping your insistence would provoke a response. “Edward, do you want me to become a vampire?” He shifted some before you, turning your hand in his until your roles were reversed, his icy fingertip tracing the grooves of your palm, his lips parting as he prepared to speak.
“I only want you to be happy, Y/n. The choice is yours. I host no preferences other than remaining by your side,” his eyes bored into yours, his golden irises gleaming like polishes copper. “As long as you’ll have me, of course.” You rolled your eyes at his unbiased reply, pulling your hand easily from his hold, though you knew he could have kept you there without so much as flexing a muscle.
“That’s not what I asked you, Edward. I didn’t ask if you wanted me happy or unhappy, or if you thought for a second that I might send you away on a whim. This is quite possibly the worst time you could have selected to beat around the bush. I asked you, very specifically I might add, if you wanted me to become a vampire. The answer is a lot simpler than you’re making it seem.” Edward paused, his eyes searching quickly for open routes through which to approach the conversation without so much as hinting at his partiality to specific outcomes and opinions.
“It’s not about what I want, Y/n. It’s your mortality we’re discussing, not mine. And before you make another dig about how I haven’t answered your question properly… if I had the choice, Y/n, I can honestly tell you that I don’t have a preference. In a perfect world, you wouldn’t have to change for me. We would both grow old together, get married and have children like regular people, we’d be buried by those children side by side, our bones would torn to dust and we’d be forgotten… but I do not have the luxury of such a choice. I know what this… life,” he chose the word tentatively, hyper-aware of the impact his words would have on your ability to decide, “has to offer. I know the upsides and the struggles rather well. I also remember my human life, the joys and memories, the process of aging. It is not my decision whether or not you remain human. I don’t ever want to see you go through the pain of transformation, nor do I want to rob you of a naturally progressing human life. If that means I live by your side in the public eye as a boyfriend, a husband, a brother, a son, a grandson even, I’m more than happy to do it. I signed up for you, for every variation of you, every stage of your life. If you don’t want that life for us, if you wish to be a part of this family in a more… permanent sense, I have my conditions.” You pursed your lips, your brain hardly working beyond the sense to comprehend the words as they flew from Edward’s rosy lips.
“Which would be?” you questioned, eager to keep your mind off of the conclusion you could feel drawing up from deep within your chest. Edward grinned, leaning forward to press his lips to your cheekbone, his lips hovering just beside your ear. He breathed his response, his cool breath raising the hairs along the back of your neck.
“I’d like to marry you, first. You’d be a Cullen before you were a Cullen, if you catch my drift. Also, I hear matrimony is an excellent method of testing whether or not you’re content to be forever tied to another person. It seems… a natural approach in my mind. I’d also get to buy you something for your birthday, or the anniversary of your birthday after you stop aging, and you wouldn’t be allowed to complain.” You lifted your eyebrow, wordlessly asking whether or not he had the nerve to continue. He beamed at you, but his smile didn’t quite reach his eyes. He was holding something back from you. You held his gaze, waiting for him to speak his mind, daring him to remain quiet. Edward inhaled slowly, his expression falling a fraction of an inch. “You wouldn’t be able to have children, of course. Either route you choose, if you decide to stay with me, your genetic line will disintegrate. Your parents won’t see your grandchildren. That is, of course, a hazard of this relationship… but if you were to change, you wouldn’t be able to carry a child. When the body is frozen in this way, never changing, it becomes impossible. At least, as a human, you could… conceive… just not with me.” You perked up in your seat, your hand on his shoulder both steadying yourself and pushing him away.
“How is that even a thought? You think I’d throw everything away to have a kid? That I’d want a child, someone else’s child? Edward, I’d only want a child, or… children, if you were the father. It’s not enough that they’d be mine. How can you even think-” Edward spoke up, cutting you off.
“You’d be surprised. If Rosalie found out that she could have a child, but that Emmett wouldn’t be the father, I’m almost certain she’d jump at the opportunity. Ideally, the child would be hers and Emmett’s, genetically at least, but she may even bend for Emmett to have a child without her. I’m not sure the mother would live long afterwards, what with Rose’s theatrics and her paranoia, but… it might surprise you, Y/n, and I’d rather you thought about it now and weighed your options than see you mourn children you’re unable to bring into the world fifty years from now.” You were finding it difficult to speak as the reality of your choice polluted your mind. You were thankful, at least for now, that Edward had sworn-off reading your mind completely, that you had made such a fuss of his habits that he would be beside himself with guilt if he so much as peeked inside your mind.
“Edward… what would you do if… if I decided to stay human, hypothetically… what would you do when I died?” He spoke so quickly that it startled you, his words flowing completely void of hesitation.
“I suppose I would travel to Volterra, lift a car over my head, and wait for the Volturi to descend. I might provoke a nomad or two. Maybe Rosalie would put me out of my misery if I tore a chunk out of her hair.” A steady hiss sounded from the floor below you, a threatening reminder that the vampire in question could hear your every word. Edward rolled his eyes, smirking in your direction. “I’m sure you’ll convince me otherwise with some sort of deathbed promise, which I would be duty-bound to obey. In truth, Carlisle would never let me do anything of the sort. I suppose I’d be stuck here, miserable, until I crumbled to pieces,” his playful expression faded immediately when he saw the depth behind your eyes.
“I… I think I want to stay human. I don’t know if I can… I’m not sure I could risk, I don’t know, killing someone, or staying inside when it’s light out. I don’t know, Edward, I just… I’m going to have to bury my parents either way, I know, but to be unable to attend their funeral because I had to fake my own death? Or watching my family grow old from a distance, being unable to reach out and touch them because I might snap their neck? And, God, don’t you ever wonder what you would’ve looked like at twenty? Thirty, forty, seventy? And the children… I know it isn’t possible for us, Edward, but who says we can’t adopt, have it be ours in a little way, not just mine and… some stranger from a sperm bank? Would it be so bad to have one lifetime together?” He smiled dimly, content for the moment to see you preserve your human life but internally at war with your decision.
“I’d love you either way. There’s nothing you could do to sway my affections in a negative manner, nothing you could say to me that would send me away. Until your dying breath, I will love each and every part of you, each line and wrinkle that creases your skin, every step and breath you take. I’m yours until the very end, Y/n. The amount of time we have together is limitless either way. Esme will be distraught, though, so don’t go telling her just yet. She might like pretending to be your sister down the road.” You smiled warmly, watching his butterscotch eyes pool with love as he looked upon your face. You crawled forward into his arms, your lips meeting fluidly with his own, your hands winding around his solid, unchanging neck as you melted into his embrace. Edward’s lips traveled down your neck, along your jawline, over the edges of your cheekbones and over your eyelids, his hands ravishing your waist as he moved to your forehead and dropped swiftly back to your mouth. When finally you parted, your breath rushing in like water from a broken floodgate, your heart hammering within your chest, you found enough space to mutter a few words before Edward had descended on your lips once more.
“When I die, I need you alive to write every single memory we shared down, Edward. I don’t care if it’s a thousand pages or ten thousand pages. You’re not going anywhere until you’ve got journals stacked to the ceilings and our story is finished. Ten years, twenty years, or two years after my death, Edward Cullen, I want you to be so happy looking back on those memories that you forget you ever thought about provoking Rosalie Hale-” his lips crashed against yours, his smile present even with his mouth pressed so firmly against your own, his whispered oath of “I love you, I love you,” spoken at every opportunity, stolen between breaths, your heart as alive in your chest as his was not. Hopefully, you thought, you would remain this way for your small slice of forever.