The NCAA Final Four is the Carolinas vs. the Pacific Northwest. How bad is it if I'm imagining a Beautiful Creatures / Twilight crossover with college basketball? #thisiswhymybracketbursts
One of my other friends responded, "this sounds like fan-fiction in the making," to which Meg replied, "Geoff Bottone! We need you!"
There was a lot of back-and-forth on her wall regarding this potential fan-fiction, including what it would be like and, of course, how slashy it would be. I participated in the discussion, laughed it off, and went about my day.
But then, like most writers, I had an idea.
This idea was hampered by the fact that I have never read Twilight or Beautiful Creatures. That said, I've read a lot of critical evaluations of Twilight (mostly from the ever-loving Mervin), so I at least know what the plot is. I had to Google Beautiful Creatures and discovered that it was that book that got turned into that movie about that girl who is a witch who will be claimed by good or evil.
And, I figured, maybe that was enough. Besides, fan-fiction writers don't give a shit about canon--Ron's a Death Eater! Harry is goff as fuck! Uh. Magenta-haired self-inserts! Kirk/Spock!--so maybe I didn't have to, either.
So, here is my non-canonical, unapproved fan-fiction involving Edward Cullen, Lena Duchannes, and the 2017 NCAA Final Four. Part One.
This one's for you, Meggles. Hope you like it!
Edward did a double-take when a young woman came sauntering out onto the court with the other team. Of course, being a vampire, his double-take wasn’t even noticeable by the humans on his team, on the other team, courtside, or in the stands. It was a brief flicker of movement, eldritch in its beauty, which could have only been caught by a high-speed camera.
The young woman, human-appearing but definitely not fully human, smirked at him. Whether this was a coincidence, or whether she had actually seen how she had rattled him, was unknown to him.
Also, just like Bella, he couldn’t read her mind.
Why the hell did everything still remind him of Bella?
The last couple of years had been the longest of Edward’s already unnaturally long life.
It turned out that Bella hadn’t really been in love with him at all—more than anything else, what she really loved was being a vampire. Once she had all the venom she ever wanted coursing through her veins, she became increasingly withdrawn. Their house, and here he smirked at the pun, became a mausoleum. She spent more and more time out in the wilderness alone.
He was so used to knowing what other people were thinking that the complete isolation from Bella drove him almost completely mad. He didn’t know what she was thinking, and he couldn’t make her tell him what she was thinking. Every day was like a tug-of-war, with Bella ultimately snapping at him over some trifle or storming off into the woods.
One day, she just didn’t come back.
He tried to fill the hole left by her departure with other things. Long drives up to Alaska, spending time with his family, trying to rebuild a shattered home for his daughter, that sort of thing. He didn’t realize until it was too late that Renesmee was already lost to him. Bella had been poisoning his daughter’s mind from the start, and Jacob, her betrothed—and really, how messed up was that—continued to feed her piles of anti-vampire propaganda that the werewolves had been clinging to for years. Yes, sometimes we kill and eat people, but you werewolves freak out and hurt the ones you love. No hypocrisy there.
Once Renesmee had left to go on a motorcycle tour with Jacob, Edward was left alone in his house with only his own thoughts and his memories for company. After the initial, months-long bout of self-pity (which might have been accurately portrayed with a sequence of blank pages with just the month names written on them, like chapter headings), he began to realize that he needed a change in his life.
A really big change.
He left the quiet fastness of Forks and enrolled in college again—this time at Gonzaga. He decided not to go in for another sciences or medical degree, instead pursuing something that he realized had become lost to him—the Humanities.
He played piano for one of the campus bands, took courses on painting and sculpture, tried to wrap his head around post-modernism and post-post modernism, and tried very, very hard not to use his powers. He refused to take it for granted that all the answers that life provided were in the heads of other people. Humans didn’t have that ability. Humans had to deal with uncertainty and mystery—something he had long ago forgotten about until Bella reminded him.
So, when he got a C+ on his all-night essay on Nietzsche and the Overman, a critique, comparing and contrasting using passages from Crime and Punishment, he went back to his dorm room knowing that he had at least come by his middling grade honestly, instead of yanking all the good ideas from the smug philosophy major two seats in front of him.
College was hard this time. There were a lot more people at Gonzaga than he was used to, and their overactive, late-teen brains were a wild static of chatter. He had been able to filter out most of the noise with effort, but that just left him feeling more lonely and isolated than ever. Not knowing what people were thinking made interacting with them extremely difficult. He often wondered if he had made a good impression on anyone, or if they all thought he was a cold, unfeeling creep.
Edward was feeling particularly low at the beginning of his second year at Gonzanga. He was about to throw in the towel and go home, but something changed all that.And the change was this: on a whim, he decided to try out for the basketball team.