Edward drove the short distance to his parents’ home. He parked in the driveway, removing the key to the pool house from his keychain. He used it to let himself into his father’s new home. He could hear Carlisle grumbling in the bedroom. He strode and leaned against the door jamb. His bed had been removed, brought to the new place and was being used in one of the guest rooms. Carlisle had an air mattress and was fighting a losing battle in inflating it. “Have you learned your lesson, Carlisle?”
His dad looked up, narrowing his eyes. “This tramp is breaking up our family.”
“One more word and I’ll break your nose. I doubt that Charlie would press charges,” Edward chuckled darkly. “That is his daughter you’re describing.”
“What do you want?” Carlisle snapped.
“To lay down a few ground rules,” Edward sneered. “I’m in control of my family. You have lost the privilege of seeing your grandchildren until you can learn to keep your fucking mouth shut. My son asked Mom what a ‘gold-digging whore’ was today in the car. I wonder where he heard that, Dad?”
“I won’t talk about her anymore,” Carlisle said, shooting Edward a glare. “But, she’s only with you for your money.”
“If she was, she’d already be moved in, Dad,” Edward yelled. “But, she’s insisting on staying on her own for at least six months! What about Bella don’t you like? The fact that I knew her in high school? What?”
“Nothing! Okay!” Carlisle screamed back. “There’s nothing. I just don’t want you throwing your life away so hastily. You need to establish yourself as a doctor, make your career your first and only priority.”
“My career is important, but my family will always be number one. And I’m not throwing anything away,” Edward sighed. “Bella is the girl I always wanted to be with. She’s smart, funny, loving, selfless and loves me for me and not my hefty trust fund. I’m doing amazing things at work. I’m happy. You know, happy? I’m not working myself to the bone and dragging my way through life. Seeing Bella and being with her has made my life seem to be in vivid technicolor, where before it was shades of gray. And to be honest, Bella has her own money. Not that it should matter.”
Carlisle frowned, sitting down heavily on his air mattress causing it to pop. He ended up on his back, cursing a blue streak. “God damn it!”
“It’s karma, Dad,” Edward scoffed. “You have a choice. You can choose to accept me and my life that I’m living, with my children and Bella, being a part of it. Or, you can choose to be this asshole, living in the pool house because you couldn’t see past your own bigotry. Just because Bella doesn’t live in the nicest neighborhoods doesn’t mean that she’s a gold-digging whore.”
“I’m sorry,” Carlisle sighed.
“Don’t apologize to me. Apologize to the woman I love more than my own life. I want you to seriously think about what I’ve said,” Edward replied. “Consider your choice.” He narrowed his eyes at his father, walking to the bathroom, grabbing his contact lenses and solution he’d forgotten to pack. “And if I hear you call Bella another derogatory name, a plastic surgeon will have to set your nose and even that might be iffy.” He turned on his heel, leaving his father in the bedroom.
The ball was in his court. He just needed to make the next move.