I don’t usually do this, but then again, it doesn’t usually take me three years to write a story. But Fall to Ruin One Day is very intricate, with nuanced details that inevitably get lost in the time between updates.

From Chapter Three, a scene with Izzy and Alice:

“Wait, what?” It’s rude of me to stare at her chest, but I can’t help it. My eyes focus on their own. “Did you have a breast reduction?”

“No. I had a prophylactic bilateral mastectomy and oophorectomy.”

“I don’t know what that means.”

“It means I had my girly parts removed to reduce my risk of cancer.”


Alice, in Chapter Four:

“When my mom died, I knew my dad would remarry within the year. I knew Edward would hate his new wife, and he’d stop coming home on holidays. When I got the letter in the mail with my room assignment, I knew you and I would be great friends. I know I’ll die of cancer like my mother…” Her voice breaks. She takes a deep breath, then swallows with such force the muscles in her throat flex visibly. “…and when I do, I’ll be even younger than she was.”

Izzy in Chapter Four:

Jasper’s not like I expect him to be, which is silly, because I’m not sure what I expected. He seems warm enough, even if he is very quiet. I hope he’s shy—that would give me reason to believe that though he may be reserved around me now, he won’t always be. Then I remember he’s one of Edward’s close friends—that’s how he got to know Alice. It bothers me because I want him to like me, but I can’t blame him. He knows me as the person who abandoned two of the people he loves most. If I were him, I wouldn’t have much to say to me, either.

Alice and Izzy, Chapter Six:

“Fine, then.” She sighs. “Edward and I have spent every holiday together since you moved to Chicago, though not because he asked for my company. That would have been a verbal acknowledgement that he has emotional needs.”

“And Edward doesn’t do that. He expects you to just know; then he holds it against you when you don’t.”

“In your case, that’s a valid criticism. It’s different for me—I do just know—and some of those years despite his insistence otherwise, I knew I couldn’t leave him alone. Thanksgiving is always rough for Edward, and Christmas is usually worse. We spend holidays together, but we don’t actually celebrate them—he’s easier to deal with if we don’t. Most years we get Chinese food and go to the movies.” She yawns. “I don’t know why I’m so tired; it must be the wine. This is the time I usually have dinner, but I think if I were to close my eyes right now, I’d sleep until morning.”

Izzy and Edward, Chapter Twelve:

“I’m worried about Alice.”

“She says she’s fine.”

“Do you believe her?” I ask.

“No,” he admits. “But until she’s ready to tell me, there’s nothing I can do—well, besides spend every spare minute I have with her, which is more or less what I’ve been doing.”


From Chapter Nineteen, Edward:

He rolls onto his back, sighing. “It was right after my mother died, and I found out I had a half-brother. I’m sure I told you about him…”

“Just that he exists and not to tell Alice.”

“My mother mentioned him in her will. Apparently, she found out about him a few weeks before she died. I confronted my father about his infidelity, and he laughed. Said it was obvious I was still a virgin, otherwise I’d understand the power of lust and sex. I was a mess when I went back to school. A few weeks later, I was at a party and this girl who was a senior invited me back to her room.

“I knew I was using her, but I didn’t care. My mother was gone, and I thought if I had sex I’d understand my father and therefore stop hating him. Instead I only hated myself.”


From Chapter Twenty-One, Izzy, Edward, and William:

Mr. Cullen takes two sips of cognac before announcing he has another engagement. After taking care of the check, he rises to his feet. Edward follows suit, but gestures for me to remain seated.

“Happy birthday, Edward.”

“Thank you, sir.”

There are no words of affection, nor are there any expressions of regret that their time together has ended. They shake hands from opposite sides of the table, and Mr. Cullen leaves. Edward’s feet are rooted in place, but he doesn’t stay with me. His face is blank as he stares off into space. Seconds pass, or maybe even a minute—I’m too stressed out to keep count. He sinks back into his chair. Leaning his elbows onto the table, he slumps forward and exhales. I know he’s hurting, but I don’t know why or what to do about it. That Edward would ever become upset in public is as weird to me as using “daresay” in modern conversation or having an “income” I do nothing to earn. I’m still processing it all when he straightens his posture and reaches for the cognac in front of him, raising the glass to his father’s now-empty seat.

“Réserve de la Famille,” he says, staring at the amber liquid. “How apropos.” In a single gulp, he downs it.

Alice and Izzy about Edward and William:

“They’ve been at odds with each other for twenty years.”

I throw my hands in the air. “Exactly!”

“It’s time for Edward to let it go.”

“Do you even know what it is?” I ask.

“No,” she admits. “But that probably means it’s something stupid, and that’s really sad. Life is too short for this bullshit, Izzy.”

From Chapter Twenty-Three, Izzy and Edward:

“You look like her,” I say, staring at the picture of her on his desk.

“Do you think so?” His demeanor seems to brighten. “I know I have her coloring, but I always thought I looked more like my father. Alice is the exact opposite. She has my mother’s facial features but our father’s blue eyes and blond hair.”

“Get out!” I smack him lightly on his shoulder. “Alice is a natural blonde?”

Edward, in Chapter Twenty-Eight:

“I…” He shakes his head, sighing. “He looks more like my father than I do.”

Edward, in Chapter Thirty-Four:

“To answer your question, I’ve had problems with anxiety as long as I can remember. I started taking medication for it during my campaign for the State Senate at the suggestion of my doctor down in Alton. I don’t frequently have panic attacks, but I do have them. That’s what the prescriptions are for.”

Sarah and Carlisle in Chapter Thirty-Six:

“I’m so proud of you,” she says. “You know, if you really believe you’re ready, there’s no need to wait. You have more than enough money to do this sitting in trust–”

“We’ve been through this before—just, no. He didn’t want me. Why should I want his money?”


“Ma, stop it.”


“My father cheated on my mother with many women, and it wouldn’t be the first time I’ve had to interact with one of them socially.”

Hope that helps.

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5 Responses

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  1. on 24 Jan 2012 at 2:00 pmLinsey

    I had forgotten about the double mastectomy :(


  2. on 24 Jan 2012 at 2:20 pmLisa

    That was incredibly helpful. There are a lot of finer points that I had forgotten. I really do want to read it again anyway, but things make more sense to me now. And I’m sad.

    Thanks (not for the sad part).


  3. on 24 Jan 2012 at 5:15 pmlourdes

    I live for your updates. This reminds me of when your other stories were updating and also the Office. Thanks for writing


  4. on 26 Jan 2012 at 5:23 pmthe cheekbones

    I love so much that Sarah was all, “William” on him.


  5. on 01 May 2012 at 9:24 pmChristina

    Wow – thank you for pulling this all together for us. It’s great to have the context…and apparently Alice is at least as amazing as her mother.