The following morning, I crept downstairs to the kitchen, hoping no one noticed the guest room’s vacancy. My mother was sitting at the island, drinking coffee.

“Is Kate still asleep?” she asked.

“Presumably.” I got a mug from the cabinet and reached for the coffeepot. “I mean, I haven’t seen her.”

“Cut the shit, Edward. I know for a fact she slept in your room last night.”

“Sorry, Mom.” I poured myself some coffee and sat beside her. “It wasn’t intentional defiance on my part; she fell asleep and I didn’t want to wake her.”

“Just don’t make a habit of it, okay?”

I wanted to ask my mom why where Kate slept was so important to her, but there was a more pressing matter to discuss.

“I got an email from Bella.”

“Oh?” The tone of my mother’s voice did not betray her thoughts. “What did it say?”

“That she’s sorry she hurt me, and she’s in therapy working on her issues. She also claims that she still loves me, and that she always has. I’m not sure I believe her.”

“This is one instance where she has nothing to gain through deception.”

“Except a clear conscience.”

“In situations like this, there’s no such thing. How did hearing from her make you feel?”

“I was angry.” I made the understatement of the decade. “I mean, it was all about her. She is sorry. She is in therapy. She still loves me. At no point did she ask how I felt.”

“She probably feels as though she has no right to ask anything of you, and in all fairness to her, she’s right. Regardless, anger is a completely justified initial reaction. It will subside eventually.”

“It already has to an extent. Now I just miss her. I want to hear her voice, to know that she’s okay. I mean, the rage is still there and I think sending me an email on my birthday was–”

“Back up a second.” She held up her index finger. “She sent it on your birthday?”

I nodded. “I read it the following day. I didn’t want it to become the focus of our trip, so after I got over the initial shock, I decided I wasn’t going to think about it until I got home. That’s why I’m just telling you now. Anyway, I want to write back to Bella; I just don’t think doing so is fair to Kate.”

“Do you know what else isn’t fair to Kate? Being in a committed relationship with her while you’re in love with someone else.”

“I love Kate.”

“But are you in love with Kate?”

I didn’t want to tell my mom that I had only recently begun thinking of my relationship with Kate as anything more than a crutch to help me get over Bella, that I didn’t know if I could fall in love with Kate because I’d only recently opened myself up to the possibility.

Thankfully, my mom continued talking without waiting for me to answer.

“As you go through life it’s inevitable that in taking care of your own needs, you’ll make choices that hurt others. This in and of itself is not a problem; it’s the absence of compassion while doing so that makes a person a selfish asshole. Put everything external aside for a moment and think only of yourself. Will reopening communication with Bella make you happy?”

I didn’t know how to respond to my mother’s question; there were too many variables. Seventeen seconds later, it became a moot point. Kate walked into the kitchen, and I realized it didn’t matter. I’d yet to put even a modicum of the effort I’d put into my relationship with Bella into the one I had with Kate, therefore it was impossible to know for sure that it was Bella I was craving and not just passion of an intensity similar to what I felt for her.

Having Bella in my life in any capacity whatsoever was too much of a distraction—my reaction to her email more than proved this. After everything Kate had given me, I owed her my undivided attention and for the remainder of the summer, that was exactly what I gave her. The result was nothing at all like my relationship with Bella. There was no deep, consuming need to be with Kate at any cost. Instead, there was quiet acceptance and—surprisingly enough—a lot of fun.

We spent the month of August at what was once her grandmother’s house on Martha’s Vineyard. Our days were filled with bike rides and laughter; when the sun went down, we played chess and made love. Had I not been painfully aware of what real passion was, I wouldn’t have noticed its absence.

From: J. Carlisle Cullen IV
Subject: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 2:14 PM EDT
To: Edward Cullen

Not to get parental on you, but don’t you have to be back at school next week? Have you been in touch with Mike? It might be a good idea to figure out where you’ll be living ten days from now.

From: Edward Cullen
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 10:28 PM EDT
To: J. Carlisle Cullen IV

Mike and Irina are still going strong; I’ll be living with Kate.

From: J. Carlisle Cullen IV
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 10:34 PM EDT
To: Edward Cullen

Are you sure you’re ready to be living with your girlfriend? Summer of love notwithstanding, cohabitation can put a lot of stress on a fledgling relationship.

From: Edward Cullen
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 11:09 PM EDT
To: J. Carlisle Cullen IV

She’s my best friend. We’ll be fine. I’m not sure why you’re so apprehensive about this. Just so you know, if she told the university she was a lesbian, she and I would be able to live together officially.

From: J. Carlisle Cullen IV
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 11:23 PM EDT
To: Edward Cullen

That’s because if Kate were a lesbian, she wouldn’t be your girlfriend. She’d just be this hot chick you roomed with. Worst-case scenario? She’d bring girls back to your room and not let you watch. As much as it would suck to be that close yet that far away from girl-on-girl action, going through a nasty break up while living with the other party involved sucks more.

From: Edward Cullen
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 11:39 PM EDT
To: J. Carlisle Cullen IV

I’m assuming you’re speaking from experience about the former and guessing about the latter.

I’m coming home Friday. I’m going to the Phillies game with Emmett on Sunday, but with the exception of those four hours, you can torture me all you want. I know it doesn’t give us a ton of time, but that’s just as well. Moving back to school on the thirteenth will be a good distraction.

From: J. Carlisle Cullen IV
Subject: Re: They sent me away to teach me how to be sensible, logical, responsible, practical.
Date: September 7, 2010 11:53 PM EDT
To: Edward Cullen

You have it backwards; they always used to let me watch. ;)

From: Emmett McCarty
Subject: Phillies Game
Date: September 18, 2010 3:14 PM EDT
To: Edward Cullen

It was great to see you last weekend. I know it was inconvenient for you with moving back to school and starting classes Monday, but it was great to see you before you left. Sorry about the incident with David’s diaper. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from fatherhood, it’s that shit happens—literally. Regardless, I do feel bad that shit happened all over your jeans while we were out in public.

Anyway, before the Great Diaper Explosion of 2010, you told me that you wanted to respond to Bella’s email, but didn’t want to put Kate through that if Bella hadn’t really changed. I’m going to be completely honest with you. In the past, I’ve been careful to stay out of the Bella drama. I haven’t always been a huge fan of hers, and I didn’t want my feelings to influence any advice I gave you.

That being said, Bella has changed. If you truly want to talk to her again, don’t let your concern that she’s just trying to make herself feel better about how she ended things stop you from reopening communication. She’s grown up a lot. Case in point—to celebrate her birthday, she invited Rose, Jazz, Alice and me over for dinner, where she gave each of us letters detailing why she values us. Here’s part of what she wrote to me:

“Most of all, I love you for being such a good friend to Edward. I know I can’t take back what I did to him, nor can anything I say or do even begin to make up for the pain I caused. Though I’ll never be able to forgive myself, I do find some solace in the knowledge that you offered him love and support after I selfishly fell victim to my own fear and cowardice. For this, I will be forever indebted to you. I’m fully aware this a note I can never repay, but I plan to spend the rest of my life trying.”

Make your own decision, bro. I just wanted you to have all the facts.

I responded to Emmett, but didn’t tell him that seemingly heartfelt written correspondence was classic Bella and that his sharing her note with me did nothing to convince me of her sincerity. If anything, it caused me to doubt it even more.

“You’re never going to believe this.”

Kate’s voice brought me back to the present.

“You know Tyler’s girlfriend Siobhan?”

I nodded.

“She has a hot tub in her common area. They just finished filling it; they’re having a party later tonight to break it in.”

Now I’d heard everything. “What? How did they get that much water up from the bathroom?”

“Apparently, one bucket at a time. We’re invited, if you want to see for yourself.”

Six hours and three minutes later, we did just that. Upon arrival, we were handed a list of hot-tub rules, the first and second of which were that we did not talk about the hot tub. The third rule was that no clothing was allowed. Before we committed to staying. I took Kate’s hand and pulled her into Siobhan’s bedroom, shutting the door behind us.

“Does this feel weird to you?” I asked. “I can totally understand why there’d be a nudity requirement if the hot tub were in Tyler’s common area. Guys always love looking at tits, regardless of whose or how or why or whatever—it’s just the way we’re wired. But Siobhan?”

“I went to prep school with Siobhan; Rule Number Three doesn’t surprise me at all.”

“What, did she have a hot tub in her room there, too?”

Kate snorted. “No, just a lot of strip-poker parties. The guys thought it was the coolest thing ever, until they realized Siobhan was an exhibitionist and that if they just asked her to get naked, she’d oblige. Needless to say, the cards games stopped. I mean, what’s the point?”

“Did you ever participate?”

“Me play poker? Are you kidding? I can’t lie to save my life. I would have been naked after a single hand.”

“We can leave if you’re uncomfortable with being naked in a room full of people.”

“Are you uncomfortable with being naked in a room full of people?” she asked.

I shrugged. “They’ve already seen what I’ve got.”

Kate rolled her eyes. “Knowing Siobhan, we were probably invited solely so she could get a second look.”

“We don’t have to stay.”

“College rite of passage, blah blah blah. There’s something kind of awesome about being in a dorm-room hot tub. I want to be able to say I did it.”

Half an hour later, Kate and I added “made out in a dorm-room hot tub” to our respective lists of memorable college experiences. Sixteen minutes after that, we were also able to include “received invitation to join dorm-room orgy,” which Kate declined immediately.

“I’m sorry,” she said when we were back in our room. “I shouldn’t have presumed you weren’t interested.”

“Don’t worry; I wasn’t.” I sat on the couch and pulled her onto my lap.

She closed her eyes and sighed. “Thank god. I was beginning to wonder if there was something wrong with me.”

“What? Because you weren’t in to having more than one sexual partner at a time?”

“I’m not in to having more sexual partners than you. I know we just kind of fell into this—you know—being a couple. I unapologetically used you as a crutch. I didn’t feel bad about it, because I thought you were doing the same thing. I’m not sure when that changed; I just know that it has, and that somewhere along the line, you helped me to feel again. I love you for that.”

“I love you, too.” I understood her feelings all too well, and I didn’t even want to think of the wreck I’d be right now if not for her.

“I mean I’m in love with you,” she clarified.

I sat there, stupefied, as my mind tried to process what she was saying.

“I didn’t mean to put you on the spot; I just wanted you to know. You don’t have to say anything now.”

That was where she was wrong. There was something I very much needed to say. When I found my voice, the six words I uttered came out so jumbled together, they might as well have been one.

“I got an email from Bella.”

“Oh? What compelled her to write after all this time?” Her voice betrayed nothing but genuine interest.

“She actually sent it on my birthday. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you. In the beginning, I didn’t want to acknowledge it, because then it would have been real. Her words seemed selfish and I was just so angry with her. Then when I told my mom about it, she interpreted it differently and instead of feeling angry I felt guilty—both for not responding and for not telling you about it, but I felt like any communication with Bella wasn’t fair to you–”

“What did it say?”

“That she’s sorry and she still loves me.”

“Do you still love her?”

“It’s much more complicated than that.” I shook my head and closed my eyes, hoping that when I opened them, I’d know what to say. Of course, it didn’t work. “What do you know about Bella?”

“Just what you’ve told me—that you met her in February and began dating over the summer, and that you felt like she used you for sex.”

Maybe Mike’s mouth wasn’t as big as I’d thought.

“She’s older than me…”

“I think I did hear that.”

“…by eight years. She teaches English where I went to high school.”

Kate looked appalled. “But if you met her in February, that means…”

“She wasn’t one of my teachers, and that’s why we didn’t become involved until summer. I’d had a thing for her since I was in tenth grade, and when I approached her at the Art Museum, I did so thinking she’d blow me off and I’d get over my unrequited attraction. I never thought she’d spend the rest of the night talking to me, or that I’d feel such a connection to her. I fell in love with her that night, and the day after I graduated from high school, I asked her out. Within a week, we were spending every waking moment together, but there was always the teacher thing, and the fear she’d lose her job if she was seen with me—even after I graduated. I wanted to believe she loved me, but her words didn’t always match her actions. When she broke up with me, she said she didn’t love me, that love wasn’t an emotion of which she was capable. I thought I’d never want to have a relationship again; I didn’t even want to try. Then I met you.”

When I looked at Kate, her eyes were wet. I’d been concentrating so much on getting the words out as quickly as possible to avoid hurting myself that I hadn’t noticed the extent to which they were hurting her. I continued, knowing that the repercussions of me losing my nerve would hurt her far more.

“I did try. I know not telling you about Bella’s email was a shit move, but I didn’t want her between us any more than she already was. I thought if I gave our relationship all of my attention, it would work. I wanted…no…I want to love you that way, in the all-consuming, intense, needful way that I loved her. I want that more than anything.”

“But you don’t.” Her voice was quiet and not at all accusatory.

I shook my head. “No. So even though Bella left me, even though she broke me, even though she told me I was nothing more than a good lay, she has continued to fuck me. There’s no doubt in my mind that if I hadn’t met her first, if I didn’t remember how that kind of love felt, I could tell you that I was in love with you and mean it, because I would have no basis for comparison. If not for Bella–”

I stopped myself before I said it, but my effort was useless; Kate whispered the rest of my sentence on my behalf.

“I would be able to make you happy.” She covered her top lip with her bottom one and sighed. “You know what? It may not be in the way I’d hoped, but I can still do that for you. Do you care about me at all?”

“I love you, Kate. You know that.”

She pushed herself off me and retrieved my laptop from my desk. “Then write Bella back and hear her out,” she said, placing it on my lap.

“I can’t.”

“Why not?”

“She’ll break me again.”

“There is that risk, yes. Then again, she could also get hit by a car tomorrow, and unlike what happened on Thanksgiving, that would be permanent. Don’t you get it? There’s always an end, Edward. No matter how fiercely you fight against it, one way or another, everyone you love will eventually leave you. Do you know how often I’ve wished I could see Jason again? Do you think that I wouldn’t gladly go through the pain of losing him a second time if I could touch his hair again for a fraction of a second?” She put her hands on my knees and sat on the floor in front of me. “I’ve started to forget. It’s been a little over a year, and the smaller details have already begun to leave me. I need my pain in order to fill in the blanks. Though I can’t remember how it felt to touch him, the fact that I still hurt means whatever I felt—even if I can no longer recall exactly what it was—was real.”

Her voice broke, but she continued speaking.

“Jason might be dead, but Bella is alive and you have reason to believe she still loves you. You don’t need to hold on to the pain; you just need to hold onto her.” She tapped my laptop with her index finger. “You’ve wasted enough time. Write to her and tell her you still love her.”

I covered her hand with mine, squeezing it gently. “How can you say that?”

“Don’t you remember?” She smiled and despite her tear-streaked face and red eyes, her smile appeared to be completely genuine. I’d still be your friend, even if we didn’t work out as a couple.”

I didn’t deserve Kate’s friendship; I didn’t deserve Kate, period. Unlike Bella, who played at self-sacrifice but never actually followed through, Kate would do anything for the people she loved—and I was one of them.

She pulled her hand from mine and walked toward the bedroom. “I’m going to sleep.”



“Thank you.”

“For what? I haven’t done anything but love you.”

And that was why I felt like such an asshole. “I know.”

“It’s not a big deal. When you love someone, you put their needs first.” She shrugged like this should have been obvious to me. “Goodnight.”

I opened my laptop and pulled up Bella’s email. For the next eleven minutes, I studied her words, pretending that I didn’t hear Kate’s quiet sobs. I couldn’t respond to Bella while Kate was crying in the next room. I put down my computer and joined Kate in bed.

“Did you do it?” she asked.


“Why not?”

If I told her it was out of respect for her, she’d call me cowardly. Telling her I needed some time to process the realization that the only two failures I’ve had in my life—my relationship with Bella and now the relationship I had with her—were also the only two things into which I’d ever put effort just wasn’t fair. Instead, I said nothing.

“Even if you’ve changed your mind, I haven’t changed mine.”


“I refuse to be your contingency plan,” she explained. “Or your second choice. I know I was okay with it in the beginning because of where I was emotionally, but it’s not something I’m willing to tolerate.”

I knew what she was saying. No matter what happened with Bella, my romantic relationship with Kate was over.

“I wish I’d met you first.” I didn’t say it to make her feel better; I said it because it was true.

“I believe that.” She pressed her face into my t-shirt and eventually fell asleep, either not noticing or choosing not to acknowledge that I was crying, too.

I spent the next six hours unable to sleep, staring at the cracked plaster ceiling, thinking about how a single trip to the Art Museum—for better or worse—changed my life. Soon Kate began to stir and pressed her hips into mine. I thought she was still asleep until as her hands slid under my shirt and lifted it over my head before resting on the button on my jeans.

I knew what she wanted; I just wasn’t sure it was the right thing to do.

“Please?” she whispered, her eyes meeting mine. “One last time, so I don’t forget.”

I nodded my consent, knowing that she wasn’t asking as part of a ploy to hang on to me; she was asking for what she felt needed to let me go, what she never got the luxury of doing with Jason. There were no longer any secrets between us, and I was finally able to put all the emotion I felt toward her into our lovemaking. It was the most powerful physical experience Kate and I ever shared, and though I was physically sated and emotionally spent, though I did love her, I still didn’t feel complete. I needed Bella for that; of this, I no longer had any doubt.

Despite this revelation, it wasn’t until late the following night that I felt strong enough to reply to her email. As much as I needed her, I wasn’t about to forgive her unless I was sure she was sincere, nor was I willing to make any declarations without knowing her intentions. Furthermore, I didn’t feel I should have to; I’d never given her any reason to question my feelings for her. Still, if the past ten months changed Bella as much as Emmett claimed they had, there was a good chance she was operating on the assumption they’d changed my feelings for her as well despite the fact I told her I’d always love her. I decided to remind her of this fact using the only words I could find that wouldn’t cause me to lose any more self-respect than I had already.

From: Edward Cullen
Subject: Re: None
Date: September 21, 2010 3:44 AM EDT
To: Isabella Swan


I’ve never lied to you.


Fourteen hours and thirty-six minutes later, my phone rang. I knew who it was without looking at the display.

“Hello, Bella.”

“Edward.” She waited forty-four seconds before speaking again. “Can we talk?”

I was about to remind her we were talking, that conversation was the sole purpose of phone calls. I swallowed my sarcasm when it occurred to me that she wasn’t trying to be cute; she was genuinely nervous.

Instead, I offered a gentle reminder. “I’m listening.”

“I mean in person.”

“Okay.” The words came out before I could reason them away. “There’s a diner on Route One called the Princetonian. Meet me there in an hour.”

I hung up before I could lose my nerve.

End Note

As we the story moves along, there will be details that don’t necessarily gel with Art After 5. I would ask that you trust me that these apparent discrepancies will be explained. Art After 5 and Counterpoint are two very different stories, and though there are events that overlap, I never intended for them to be read side by side.


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23 Responses

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  1. on 12 Mar 2010 at 2:27 am@lonestarkendall

    The irony that I am just now beginning to weep after Kate and Edward's relationship is over is not lost on me. You turned me into a Kate fan. I always wanted Bella and Edward together, but I was somewhat comforted knowing if he couldn't have Bella, he had Kate. That is a testament to your writing. You truly thrust your readers into the emotions of your protaganist, and I feel like I was suffering with Edward through all his turmoil in this chapter.

    It's interesting to see that all of those who Edward hold dear (his parents, Emmett and Kate) were cheerleaders for Bella in the end. Was that intential on your part or is it more a reflection on how they feel for Edward — wanting him to be happy and to follow and his heart.

    Lastly, the note to Emmett. Killed me. It really showed how much Bella had changed and how Edward had become the cynic. Ugh, he's been broken.

    We are coming up on my favorite part…the beginning of their friendship and the renewal of their relationship. I'm planning on keeping my kleenex handy.


  2. on 12 Mar 2010 at 2:28 amkatydid13

    I loved this. I feel so bad for both and Edward and Kate. I'm really proud of Kate though. She deserves more and it would be so tempting to stay.


  3. on 12 Mar 2010 at 2:31 amcarolyn-c

    Thank you, Colleen. Can't wait for the next chapter.


  4. on 12 Mar 2010 at 2:51 amflyrbrd

    I love it. As hard as it was to read, it was beautiful.


  5. on 11 Mar 2010 at 10:00 pmLynn

    The diner scene is the one I’ve most looked forward to since Counterpoint began. I didn’t like the way Bella handled it at all in AA5: she was still very stand-offish and negative and somewhat vicious. Somewhere along the way, though, he is able to see passed that and get around the hurt, and forgive her. I’m really curious HOW he goes about that. I think it’ll be a much needed life lesson to quite a few of us in how to not hold a grudge and let bygones be bygones.


  6. on 12 Mar 2010 at 3:18 ambellybell79

    Finally!!!! I was waiting for the break between Edward and Kate. I love Edward and Bella and I think Edward is a little bit aprenssive, he is not the only one that is hurt.
    Bella is suffering a lot and she is a lot insecure about her relation with him because of the age difference.
    She thnks that Edward would probably be better without her
    Im looking forward for your next chapter. I Love AA5 and Counterpoint
    and I hope I can read AA5 all over again
    You are an amazing writter


  7. on 12 Mar 2010 at 4:08 amadhita

    Kate really deserves a lot of respect because she's not hanging on to Edward at all costs, instead she's willing to make him move forward first and foremost because she knows she deserves more than just a bit of Edward's heart and soul; if she's willing to give all, she wants to receive all, and if not, she's assertive enough to move on. She's also thinking about Edward's best interest and as his friend, she doesn't want him to lose the opportunity to really heal and get closure. Good for her!


  8. on 12 Mar 2010 at 4:18 amlvk1978

    Boy, reading this gets more difficult with each chapter. My heart absolutely bleeds for Edward and I think that I really did not appreciate what he was going through in AA5. I suppose that old saying "Out of sight, out of mind" is very appropriate for me. I didn't much like Bella in AA5 after what she did to Edward but I find myself nearly despising her while reading in Edward's POV. It seems that he is making all the sacrifices here — all the compromising.

    The one thing I appreciate the most is Edward's POV. I regret that Mrs. Meyer wasted so much time in the mind of an adolescent, immature, selfish and boorish person when she had crafted a character with so much soul and intelligence. Perhaps she felt herself incapable of getting to the truth of the character. Who knows? All I know is that I thank God that wonderful fanfic authors such as yourself have not only gotten to the truth of Edward, but also have expressed the poetry of his soul. Thanks for posting.


  9. on 12 Mar 2010 at 5:35 amJenn

    I have a couple questions, does Edward remain Kates' roommate going forward? Im confused on how she would want to share a room with him not alone a bed going forward after that night even though they are ending on somewhat a good note.

    Did Edward expect Bella to respond to his email? was he ever concerned she wouldnt?

    Im still processing this chapter. It was a gental rollarcoaster for me so I dont have a real review yet, just questions. Thanks.

    Happy Anniversary tomorrow by the way


    sleepyvalentina reply:

    Patience. The answer's in the next chapter. :)


  10. on 12 Mar 2010 at 1:33 amMichelle

    omg i can't wait for more you are amazingggg


  11. on 12 Mar 2010 at 2:21 amSassyK

    Repeating the fact that this chapter has moved me more than any other chapter I have ever read in any fanfic…and a good amount of real fic as well.


  12. on 12 Mar 2010 at 12:26 pmGloria

    I love this story. I can’t wait to read the next chapter.

    Edward’s POV tells us that his love for Bella is eternal and despite his attempts to move on, only his true love i.e. Bella completes him. I feel so sorry for Kate. She is as they say “perfect” but love is not perfect.

    We must not forget that Bella broke up with Edward because she was insecure and given how she was raised, probably justified. I am glad that her breakup with Edward was the catalyst she needed to grow up and to make the necessary changes in her life.


  13. on 13 Mar 2010 at 6:37 amViki

    I love love love Kate. I always think a story is so much more when the characters are people and not stereotypes. Kate is quite remarkable, she is the person I think I would like to be, whereas Bella is the (sometimes) selfish person that so many of us are. Thank you for not taking the easy way out and making someone the obvious villian.


  14. on 14 Mar 2010 at 11:35 pmElizabeth440

    It occurred to me as I was reading this chapter that Edward really needed his friendship and relationship with Kate to prepare him in a way for Carlisle's death. Kate has been many things to Edward, one of which is unfortunately a model for how to deal with loss and grief. Kate's loss of Jason is so sadly a harbinger for Edward's loss of Carlisle. Kate might not have been the love of Edward's life, but she was able to give him what he needed when he most needed it.

    It is a testament to your terrific talent that this story could have gone in such a different way (i.e., Edward is able to find passionate love with Kate) and been as equally compelling. Had I not read AA5 before this and better understood Bella, I would have been rooting for Edward to realize that he could love Kate after all.

    I love how much story you are able to convey through emails. They're not only a creative way to demonstrate the communication and connection between the characters, but also very clever in how they reflect the passage of time and plot.


  15. on 15 Mar 2010 at 8:47 pmTippyL

    I felt like I was holding my breath while reading this entire chapter. Thank god it's over. I"m ready to move on. Kate is a little too good to be true. God, I wanted her to be a bitch to him just a little. I know Bella broke Edward, but he was being just a little shitty about Emmett's email.

    Meanwhile, your writing is as stellar as ever. Thank you for sharing this story with us.


    sleepyvalentina reply:

    Oh, Kate will have her moments. Just wait.


  16. on 07 Jul 2010 at 1:13 pmluckyduck0076

    *Pouting* Kate. Sad Kate. :( I wish Edward would get over Bella forever. That Bella didn’t have this hold over him. I wish Edward could love Kate the way she deserves to be loved. I don’t really believe that Bella has changed to the point where she is ready for Edward. I think it would be a cruel twist of fate if Bella’s therapist was Esme.


  17. on 10 Jul 2010 at 7:43 pmrpattzdude

    wow i thought i would be the only one to cry like a baby but no several readers cried too and it was so painful and the love so strong… thank you for the A/N : )


  18. on 27 Nov 2010 at 12:42 pmJulie

    Thanks for the head’s up about gelling because I am reading them side by side. I’ll keep what you said in mind and give you your creative license ;)


  19. on 02 Jan 2011 at 2:08 pmFancastride

    Loved it. Kate was so strong letting Edward know she couldn’t be second best no matter what now. I know I’m all over the place reading your stories sorry about that. Again love them and I am trying to catch up.


  20. on 10 Jan 2011 at 10:02 pmSea4Me

    K8 is Gr8, lol. Seriously, tho, she is a smart cookie & Edward was lucky to grow with her.

    I’m so glad I didn’t read the two stories simultaneously. The feelings/sympathies/”truths” vary enough (in an accurate way) that the tale would have become muddled.


  21. on 23 May 2011 at 5:42 ammostly a lurker

    Major points for the Cheap Trick reference! I LOVE that album – played it until I wore it out literally, lol. The Logical Song is just perfect for Edward in so many ways.
    Thanks for writing & sharing,