Chapter Thirty-Eight: Convalescence
Bella slept deeply, the sedative that Carlisle injected into her IV forcing her to rest quietly and painlessly. Once she was well-under, he removed Bella's chest tube, stitching her side closed and bandaging her wound.
Carlisle kicked Alice and me out of her room while he treated Bella, and Charlie returned while we were still waiting outside Bella's door, Alice rolling her eyes at me as I paced restlessly back and forth, my arms folded, my eyes on the floor.
Will you please, please calm down, Edward, my sister scolded. For goodness sake, it's a simple procedure. Stop making yourself an emotional mess every time Bella is out of your sight.
Alice glanced at me with a superior look as she filled Charlie in on Jacob Black's visit and the present procedure going on in Bella's room. Charlie's eyes followed me as I paced; although I knew that my actions were causing Bella's father more stress (as Alice was telling me through her thoughts), I just couldn't stop the restless movement.
I just couldn't relax without seeing with my own eyes that Bella was well. Even hearing her steady heart rate and normal respirations couldn't quell my anxiety. I had to see her, touch her, breathe in her sweet scent to be myself again.
After what seemed like hours (but Alice informed me was a mere twenty minutes), Carlisle and the nurse assisting him opened Bella's door, Carlisle inviting us back into Bella's room. While Charlie questioned my father more specifically regarding Bella's condition, I resettled myself at her side, prepared for another night in the hospital.
Carlisle's hand on my shoulder surprised me; my alertness to anyone beside the beautiful, sleeping girl in front of me was negligible. “Edward, you need to go home and rest for a while,” he said for Charlie's benefit. You know that you need to hunt, Son, and the nurses and Charlie need to see you go home to sleep for a while.
I glared at Carlisle with resentful eyes. There was no way that he could make me leave Bella. It was not going to happen. “I'm fine,” I insisted.
Unceremoniously, my father grasped my upper arm, dragging me to my feet and walking me out the door. With the human witnesses, including Bella's father watching Carlisle's little scene, I didn't dare fight him; I stumbled in a convincingly human manner as Carlisle pulled me out the door and down the hall.
Edward, you must leave—at least for a little while. You're making a spectacle of yourself among the staff and Charlie, Carlisle scolded me.
“I haven't heard any such thing,” I protested in a hiss too low for human ears. “Charlie certainly isn't suspicious. I can tell him that I napped this afternoon in Bella's room.”
My father's golden eyes narrowed, obviously measuring the darkness of my own eyes.
“Thirst is not on my mind in the least, Carlisle. I'm perfectly fine. I will not leave Bella—and that's final,” I said, my eyes narrowed.
Carlisle sighed in surrender. “Very well, Edward. I'm trusting you. If the thirst becomes too much, will you promise to go hunt?”
I rolled my eyes, hissing in return, “Fine. But it's not going to be a problem. And I'll pretend to sleep this afternoon as well. All right?” I folded my arms, glaring at my father.
Carlisle shrugged. Very well. He glanced at his watch, then looked back at me. I'll be back in a few hours to check on Bella. She's resting comfortably and should be released sometime tomorrow.
I nodded, smiling grimly as I imagined trying to keep Bella resting at home during her recovery. The next few weeks were going to be anything but easy.
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