We’re not talking of a man’s cologne here – although, if it could be bottled we’re sure it would have the potential to outsell even Dior Homme, and we know we’d buy it. *grins* We mean the other type of essence…the very quality that makes Edward who he is…that makes him so special, so Edward. It doesn’t matter if he has a cold, dead heart or not, what matters to us is how Edward, in whatever form we read him, gets our hearts beating.
These Edwards, their embodiment – soul, personality, intrinsic nature, life, legacy, era – do vary. But all the diverse Edwards today, we find in fanfiction, have those requisite attributes which characterise this much loved, immortalized character. They have that “je ne sais quoi” that keeps us coming back for more, time and again! Please enjoy!
*Review by Pattyrose*
Look How You Turned Out ~ If I was going to write another story it would be something like this…
Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance – Bella, Edward – Chapters: 45 – Words: 49,861 – Reviews: 4,040 – Favs: 584 – Follows: 900 – Updated: Dec 3 – Published: Nov 6 – id: 9826376
I’ve totally fallen in love with this Edward, just like I originally fell in love with Edward because he was so perfectly not perfect (no matter what SM’s Bella said).
Counselor’s LHYTO Edward is in love with Bella, but just like Originalward was so darn self-sacrificing that he chose to run off rather than hurt Bella, or give her up to Jake rather than take her away from her human life, this Edward is just as self-sacrificing, and you know what? I love that. (Up to a point, of course.) There haven’t been many self-sacrificing Edward’s in fan fiction lately, and Counselor’s is like a breath of fresh air.
LHYTO Edward loves Bella secretly, believing he’s too old for her, or that she shouldn’t be tied down to Forks while she’s still so young. So he watches her leave, though it breaks his heart:
See, I’ve faced it. I have. Bella is in her big city days, her take on the world days, her let’s see what I can do, days. And she should be. She’s young, hell she’s brilliant. Why shouldn’t she get to take off and fly. She doesn’t need some old guy with a kid, a great kid, but someone else’s kid…she doesn’t need that. Or want it. She liked Juney but she never even thought of being a mom. She broke his heart but it couldn’t be helped. She had a right to go to college. A right to move to Chicago. She didn’t abandon us, that’s what I had to keep telling him.
But even with all that, he’s not perfect. He makes stupid mistakes just like Originalward did. Like starting a relationship with another woman just because he thought he couldn’t have Bella. And then letting that woman go on and on about their relationship possibly taking on a more serious turn, like marriage, even though he knew he didn’t care about her nearly enough for that.
“You asked if it’s serious. It is. She’s…she wants to get married.”
I stop again. “She…wants to get married,” I repeat like I’m translating. “What about you? You?”
“I’m…thinking about it.”
I make a silent ‘o,’ then take off walking again.
“That’s normal behavior, Bella. I’m being normal.”
“Great. Be normal,” I say over my shoulder as I run to my front door.
“I can count on her. She’ll stay,” he yells.
But you know what? That’s what makes this Edward so great; that he’s so silly sometimes, and so blindly in love that he doesn’t stop to think of the consequences, just like Originalward didn’t at times.
Yet he’s Edward, and so he’ll come to his senses, and just like Originalward, he doesn’t do things halfway; he does them epically:
It’s a few seconds, then it buzzes. “Marry me.”
When I don’t answer right away he texts, “Where’s your big balls now?”
I don’t answer. I think he’s joking. After all, we were joking and I texted my home made ass and he joke-texted ‘marry me.’
“Meet me in the street.” Him
I shake the balls out of my pants, odd I know, and put them on and go to the mud room and stick my feet in my boots again and put on Charlie’s big jacket.
I hurry outside and he’s halfway down his walk and we meet in the middle of the road. His hands slide into the open sides of the coat and he’s not wearing any protective weather stuff, just his t-shirt still damp from his run.
“Are you joking?” I ask right away. “You are, right?”
He doesn’t say anything.
“Was it a joke?” me
“Do you want it to be?”
“Oh no buddy. You are so going out on a limb on this one.”
“Just trying to get a reaction,” he says.
“Is it such a bad idea?”
“You were joking, right? You don’t use that as a test run.”
“What if I didn’t?”
“Just joking, right?”
“What if it wasn’t?”
And this here is another thing that I love about this Edward and reminds me of Originalward: he’s so darn ready to tie the knot, to jump all the way in, to stop wasting time on stupid dating and conventionalities. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I suppose in real life doing some dating before getting married makes sense, but hey, this is fiction, and just like Originalward made me swoon with how ready he was to make it forever once he’d realized he couldn’t live without Bella, LHYTO Edward makes my heart go pitter-patter too, ready to jump in with both feet once he realizes he can have the girl of his dreams. And isn’t that why we read fan fiction, for that feeling of utter and complete love that Edward originally gave us?
LHYTO Edward does the same.
*Reviews by Cared*
All That Jazz ~ Set in 1919. Meet orphan sisters, Bella and Alice Swan, as they journey to Chicago to meet their Aunt Esme, brazen, disowned sister of their mother. Join Bella as she learns the true meaning of marriage and love. M for adult themes and later lemons. AH/AU
Twilight – Rated: M – English – Romance/Angst – Chapters: 23 – Words: 184,134 – Reviews: 1983 – Updated: 5-30-11 – Published: 4-27-10 – Bella, Edward – Complete
A heart, full of joy and gladness,
Will always banish sadness and strife.
So always look for the silver lining,
And try to find the sunny side of life.
“Look for the Silver Lining,” by Jerome Kern (1919)
(Each chapter opens with a snippet of song lyric from the era. A lovely touch!)
As the name suggests, this story is set in Chicago during the birth of the Jazz Age…radio, big-bands, motor cars, bobs, dancing, Hollywood, Flappers, prohibition, speak-easies and all that jazz. What an amazing time to have lived!
This Golden Age wasn’t all golden for everyone though; organised crime was rife, workers and women’s rights were woeful and being fought for with vigour. There was an ongoing struggle between the generations too; the willful disregard of social etiquette by youth engaging in such acts as smoking in public and – wait for it – young ladies holding men’s hands without wearing gloves! Shocking!
This is the world a sheltered Bella and Alice enter following the death of their mother Renee, who, IMHO, gave the girls an upbringing that bordered on abusive, but enough of that. Their individual demeanor upon arrival in vibrant and bustling Chicago, to embark on a new life with the Cullens, and indeed their attitude to it, couldn’t be more different, but the sibling bond and its development within the new family dynamics was both fascinating and a pleasure to read. Not surprising given her life experience – or lack of it – Bella was wholly discombobulated by her reaction to meeting the young Edward Masen…
The young man sitting behind the piano was like nothing I had ever seen before. The light from the window wall behind him came in in golden shafts that seemed to set his hair on fire. It was the most unique shade of bronze. As he played, he kept his eyes closed and a near beatific smile on his face. He moved his upper body in time with the music, his unruly hair falling in and out of his face.
I stepped forward, wanting to get closer to the music. I kept telling myself over and over again it was the music which was drawing me in. I was so focused on the beautiful piano player, I didn’t see the plant holders lining the side of the room. My foot caught in one of the holders, causing three of the empty pots to clatter the ground. I followed quickly after.
The music stopped abruptly and too quickly I was being lifted to my feet by a pair of warm hands. I looked up into eyes the color of jade flecked with ebony and gold. They were fascinating in themselves. I had to shake my head in order to clear the haze.
“Are you alright?” he asked.
I nodded, my head feeling light.
“You took quite a spill; are you sure I can’t help you to a seat?”
I was never more ungrateful for my propensity to blush. I couldn’t help the torrent of red I felt creeping up my neck as I listened to his words and watched his mouth move. I immediately chastised myself for being so immoral as to watch a stranger’s mouth move. It was unthinkable. I vaguely recognized that he was still talking and that he had let me go; something within me that I didn’t recognize was sad not to feel his too-warm hands on me any longer.
Ooh, I think I’d be a bit discombobulated too! As when I read that scene, the wonderful, descriptive writing had me living right in the moment.
So, Edward Masen. Gah! He has what it takes, you know, that essence, he exudes that special something that makes him an Unforgettableward. He is classic Edward…just how I imagine hope a human 1919 Edward would have been: intelligent, respectful, selfless, responsible, gallant, romantic, loving and a complete gentleman – even with the newly roused desire within him. Well, maybe not a complete gentleman…;)
I recommend this story for so many reasons, not least of which is Edward, but the perfectly captured setting of one of my favourite eras too, with its social engagements, and its coming of age struggles faced by both men and women. Javamomma9021 has been creative in her spin of the original characters, showing us Edward with his parents Elizabeth and Edward Masen, and, paralleling the growth of a duckling to a swan, the growth of a Swan to a Cullen, not forgetting a Jasper as you’ve never seen him before. I also adore the slow pace of Edward and Bella’s courtship and their physical intimacy – which bizarrely I found hot!
Oh to have a time machine, whether HG Wells style or à la Marty McFly. I’d happily forgo witnessing the momentous events of history in favour of sipping iced tea on the porch swing with this Edward. Sigh!
Shine On ~ Bella Swan-Bishop, a widow and mother to a young daughter Zoe, purchases an estate – ghost included. She gets a lot more than she bargained for when she hires handsome and very interested Edward Cullen as her landscape architect. Complete
Twilight – Rated: M – English – Romance/Drama – Chapters: 36 – Words: 178,381 – Reviews: 1290 – Updated: 11-27-12 – Published: 3-7-12 – Bella, Edward – Complete
For me, Shine On is first and foremost a story of relationships, whether between friends, lovers, or family, some simple…some complicated and complex. The backdrop of a beautiful home in need of renovation and its history, businesses – mostly a joy but one a burden, and the haunting by ghosts – one in the literal sense of the word and one in the metaphorical, add layers to the story but still allows the spotlight to shine on the characters. And what beautifully written characters they are to complement a truly beguiling story.
Bella, a grieving widow, moves with her daughter to a large, old mansion with sweeping gardens…
BPOV from Chapter 1
I would need a landscape architect to take on this large of scale of project. The garden and orchard, the remnants of the maze, the small lake, and gazebo needed much work. I needed someone with vision to make it beautiful again. I turned and looked up at the deep red brick and sandy colored stone of my enormous home built in the Queen Anne style. It even had a name it was so impressive: Edenwick Park.
It had seemed a bit foolish to my dad when I had purchased this estate, but I had wanted it desperately the first time I laid eyes on it. I could easily afford it. David had been very rich and owned his own company, which I still held the controlling shares of. I had simply sold off all our other properties we owned: the yacht, everything I knew I’d never visit or use again, and bought Edenwick. I needed something new for my daughter and I, some place without any memories of David and where I could make a new life for the two of us.
As I said, for me this story is about relationships, and naturally, the most engaging one is between Bella and her chosen landscape architect, Edward. Having said that, the beautiful bond between Edward and Bella’s daughter, Zoe, brought a tear to my eye, and runs a very close second.
Bella tells us Edward is “a good man, a man of his word- but he’s so much more. He’s a loving man, a gentle man, a gifted and talented man, and so intelligent, a deep thinker.” Let’s meet him, after Bella has enchanted him, to see if you agree he is also a sensual man, a sexy man…
BPOV from Chapter 10
“Bella, baby, it’s my desire to always be close to you,” he said roughly as he gazed into my eyes.
He then slowly lowered his head, and I felt him place his lips on the sensitive skin on my neck. He didn’t rush as he skimmed his lips and tongue up and down what surely was my favorite erogenous zone. I closed my eyes, felt the throbbing between my legs, and heard the soft moan escape my mouth.
“Delicious Bella. I could eat you up,” he said as an unsteady whisper against my ear, and I felt the tremor go down my body.
I slightly turned my head and kissed him at that perfect spot, that little hollow at the base of his throat, before slightly skimming my tongue across his skin.
I pulled his head down and whispered in his ear, “Delicious Edward. I could lick you for days.”
He swore, and then I found myself swept up in his arms, held against his thumping heart.
Oh sweet Edward, you have my heart thumping too! Now have a peek at the following chapter from Edward’s point of view. Perhaps you should sit down first in case you swoon…
She turned to me and held out her hand, and as I slid my fingers between hers and looked down at her beautiful, smiling face, I realized that my love for her wasn’t an easy, sweet love, but an all-consuming, take-your-breath-away love. Make-you-do-stupid-things-and-put-a-burn-in-the-pit-of-your-stomach love. An uncomfortable, powerful, head-spinning love. I skimmed my eyes over her face and then closed my eyes, taking a deep, calming breath. Bella, my heart called out in joy.
What an Edward!
Now, I’ve probably given you the impression that everything is permantly rosy in the garden (pardon the pun) but no, Edward and Bella have thorny issues to overcome (sorry, I’ll stop now). It’s only realistic for Bella to have difficulty moving on from her past, but I won’t deny there were a few times when Edward was frustrated with, and confused by, Bella and her behaviour, and to be honest, so was I. Edward, sweet and patient as he is, has some learning to do about being in a serious relationship also, but the bitter just serves to make the sweet more potent in this wonderful tale. Oh, did I forget to mention the lemons? Edward and Bella are both extremely horny and never miss an opportunity for sex. No surface is out of bounds, but it’s never at the expense of the plot – it’s actually quite cute! I really enjoyed my time with these lovely and loving characters…they shine on in my memory, and I think they will do the same for you, too.
*Review by Midnight Cougar*
Beyond Time ~ After the Cullens leave Forks, a twist of fate lands Bella in Chicago in 1918. She thinks it’s a second chance to build a life with Edward, but when she finds him, he’s not quite what she expected. Can Bella create the future she’s hoping for?
Rated: Fiction M – English – Drama/Romance – Bella, Edward – Chapters: 38 – Words: 295,570 – Reviews: 8,136 – Favs: 6,146 – Follows: 2,641 – Updated: Jun 4, 2011 – Published: Feb 17, 2010 – Status: Complete – id: 5755522
When Cared mentioned doing a post centered on the essence of Edward, there were numerous fantastic Twifics and brilliant Edwards that came to my mind, but one that stood out, for me, was Beyond Time by TKegl. The whole story has a special essence of not only Edward, but Twilight as well. From the New Moon canon storyline of vampire Edward leaving human Bella, to the time travel back to 1918 – Edward’s year of transformation – where we get to live in a world that incorporates a 17-year-old, human, green-eyed Edward *swoon*, vampire/doctor Carlisle before Edward was in his life, Spanish influenza and more; the spirit of what we’ve all loved and held dear in Edward’s world, in the Twilight Saga world, is all there, in some way, shape or form. The essence of Edward truly lives on in Beyond Time.
The story begins six months after Edward left Bella, but this Bella is a bit different – Jake even calls her “the new and improved badass Bella” – and she says, “I’m not an idiot. I knew he was lying. He does… did… love me and left because of some twisted obligation to protect me. It broke my heart. It pissed me off.” Yes, she is bitter, but she is also stronger, at least on the outside, and more “aware.” Nonetheless, one thing that did remain the same here is her relationship with Jacob. He was her rock, her best friend and even now, he is a huge part of her life. He is also the canon Quileute werewolf, and he wants Bella to partake in a tribal ritual. That is where she learns about the “Spirit Walk” or “vision quest” which is “…supposed to put him in touch with his spirit guide… show him his path, his destiny.” When Bella takes part, she experiences not only that “rite of passage” but a whole new world of spirituality and literally goes beyond time to one week later/92 years earlier and this is what she eventually sees…
*Chapter 1*: Prologue: Of Warm Skin and Wishful
I’d never really understood the phrase “my heart caught in my throat” until that moment.
For there he was.
And he looked exactly the same.
And he looked completely different.
I stood at the gate, my trembling hand resting on the painted wood, and took in the sight of him. His hair was the reddish-brown I remembered, but instead of wildly exploding around his head, he had tamed it with some sort of gel or pomade. Still, a few rebellious locks escaped, falling over his sweaty forehead as he worked.
He had removed his jacket and tie – I could see them tossed over the porch railing – and rolled up the sleeves of his crisp, white shirt. The corded muscles of his forearms tightened and released as he worked the shovel into the garden soil. My eyes wandered down his body, capturing flashes of images in the midst of my shock – the crisp pleats on the front of his trousers, the smudge of dirt above his knee, the scuffed brown shoe pushing forcefully on the blade of the shovel.
He paused, lifting a gloved hand to his forehead, wiping away the sweat on his brow, frowning at the stubborn stump before him. Suddenly he stiffened, as if realizing he was being watched.
And he turned in my direction.
And I gasped.
I had always loved his eyes – whether they were black with thirst or amber with satiation. But these eyes were neither of those things.
I knew they wouldn’t be, that this wasn’t the Edward I knew.
Yet it still surprised me to see it in person. To see, instead of topaz or amber or black, a rich, dark green.
Carlisle had told me they’d been green.
Right now they regarded me warily, then curiously.
Still he said nothing. He just stood there, watching me. His gaze dipped down briefly before meeting mine once again. He colored slightly, a sheepish smile lighting his features.
Damn. He was checking me out.
I tried to draw a breath, but the tightness in my chest made it impossible.
I couldn’t even blame the damned corset this time.
He stood, loosely holding the shovel, and watched as I lifted the gate latch with a shaking hand, then slowly approached him. I drank him in thirstily, having been deprived of him for so long. With each step the hole in my heart constricted a little more and by the time I stood before him, it was like it never existed.
Without even realizing it, I reached out and his eyes widened in surprise. I hesitated only briefly before stroking my trembling fingers down his cheek.
His skin was not pale… not cold… not hard.
It was soft… and warm. Clean-shaven, yet his beard had started to grow back, tickling my fingers. My fingers trailed down his face to his full, pink lips.
I could feel his warm breath on my fingertips and my body burst into flames, as it always did when I was near him. Even after all this time, it remembered. Even though he was different, it remembered.
“Edward,” I whispered.
He replied quietly, “I’m sorry,” and my fingers tingled at the vibration of his mouth. Because although his voice missed the musical quality I’d come to know so well, the velvet tones still wrapped around his words in a familiar way.
His eyes locked on mine and my heart stopped again, my hand dropping to my side and a tear trickling down my cheeks at the next words to escape his lips.
“Do I know you?”
Oh, yes, my darling Edward, you know us… *wink* …and we know you, love you, covet you, and hold you dear in our hearts, now and…beyond this Twilight time. Believe me, you will not want to put down this complete and consuming story as you travel with Bella and venture into an alternative world and life through her mystical experience that transcends another time and place. It’s hard to explain the essence of it all here, but trust me…”It’s a wolf thing.” Join Bella on this adventurous and memorable journey!
*Review by Gingerandgreen*
Bella is a school counselor, but Edward is a vampire posing as a student. Will Bella defy her head and follow her heart? Or will she conquer her desire and do what she believes is right? Not your daughter’s/niece’s/little sister’s Twilight. Angsty.
Twilight – Rated: M – English – Romance/Fantasy – Chapters: 37 – Words: 185,919 – Reviews: 3577 – Favs: 2,742 – Follows: 1,785 – Updated: Sep 16, 2011 – Published: Jun 10, 2010 – Bella, Edward – Complete
It may seem strange to choose a story to review on the Essence of Edward post that is written entirely from Bella’s POV. But we fell in love with Meyer’s Edward through Bella’s eyes, and Osa Bella‘s Edward is even more intensely Edwardish than the original in my humble opinion.
No, Bella. He’s a vampire, hopelessly in love with you and he’s been 17 for a very, very long time.
Myg‘s Edward endures the torture of star-crossed love with great dignity and intelligence. He is fiercely protective, dominating, tender, self-sacrificing, devoted, lustful, respectful and glorious. Bella is magnificent, but she has to go through an awful lot to grow into her mysterious magnificence; Edward follows her through every agony, subtly suggested by the author through our intimate knowledge of his essence. Osa Bella is fanfiction at it’s optimum – I can’t think of a single reason not to read it.
*Reviews by AllyVera*
When Cared first told me about her fabulous idea of doing an “Essence of Edward” post I had a wonderful time delving into my favourites to see which of my beloved Edwards would be the best candidates. But, before I reveal my final choices, I think I should explain what my personal “Essence of Edward” is.
When I read “Twilight” back in 2009 what I fell in love with most (yes, apart from the bronze-haired, sharp-jawed magnificence) was Edward’s inherent goodness. And it is not that he is perfect, because he isn’t – just that he tries his utmost to be good – to do the right thing, even if it means sacrificing his own happiness… *sigh* That’s what made me swoon! Coincidentally, it is what drew me to Bella’s character as well. They really were meant for each other!
So, with that in mind – I chose a couple of stories where I believe that the fanfic version of Edward truly embraces what I fell in love with all those years ago.
The Cullen Sutras ~ After a difficult breakup with her longtime boyfriend, Bella meets a sexy, but enigmatic, yoga instructor whose dedication to the art masks a hidden sorrow. Further complicating matters is his loyalty to the yogic practice of brahmacharya, celibacy! AH
Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Angst – Bella, Edward – Chapters: 36 – Words: 186,863 – Reviews: 2,923 – Favs: 2,217 – Follows: 989 – Updated: May 31, 2011 – Published: May 20, 2010 – Status: Complete – id: 5983581
I think a lot of us could empathise with Bella in The Cullen Sutras when we meet her in the first chapter. She has just gone through an unexpected and humiliating break-up with her long-time boyfriend, Mike…and she is having a wallow in her misery, but her friends Alice and Rose come to the rescue by dragging her to a yoga retreat for the weekend. Little does Bella know at this stage, that by the end of the weekend, Mike will be nothing but a distant memory.
Edward enraptures Bella (and the reader) from the moment he catches her mid-trip – pretty much as soon as she arrives at the retreat (yep, yoga will help with that clumsiness, Bella) – and from that moment on the gorgeous jade-eyed man is at the forefront of her thoughts.
Excerpt from Chapter Two (first yoga class with Edward – BPOV)
“While I initially had trouble following his instruction, I eventually got into the rhythm of the ujjayi, or “ocean,” breath that Edward described as one of the most important techniques we’d use. I was still a little self-conscious about the Darth-Vader-like sounds that were emitting from my mouth as I constricted my throat muscles, but it was strangely relaxing. I opened my eyes, which had been closed, and saw Edward smiling at me encouragingly.
“Now, we add movement,” Edward said, standing up. “One more thing before we begin this portion of the class. I’m known here for my strong assists, which means I have a very hands-on approach to the practice….”
“Please let me know if you are uncomfortable with physical contact and I’ll respect your space.”
NO. Thank you. Apparently, no one else had a problem either, since no one spoke up. It made sense; why someone would not want this man to lay his hands on them was beyond me. I glanced at Angela to my left. She looked as eager to have him touch her as I felt.
Bella is quite hilarious in her internal ramblings at times, but you can’t blame the girl for her thoughts! If we are honest, it’s what Edward does to us all
Just like our beloved canon Edward, Yogiward has quite a few – scratch that, a lot of – dark secrets. Secrets which he is determined never to let Bella know. I think this is a huge amount of the reason I loved this story so much, Edward is a puzzle – an enigma. I enjoyed peeling back each layer to get to know him better and better.
Magnolia822 has fashioned a fabulous plot that is all-human yet retains so many canon elements – which I adore. There are moments of true angst, where my heart broke for Bella (I do love a bit of angst though) but there are also moments of intrigue, drama and a triple helping of UST!
At the end of the day though, it is Edward and his story that make The Cullen Sutras a fascinating read. If you like your Edwards mysterious, sexy, strong, brave, a whole lot of complicated with a tortured soul – you need to read TCS (unless you already have, of course!).
Perfectly Imperfect ~ Bella is a socially awkward loner. Edward is lost in a meaningless marriage. Co-workers of a moving company, several long road-trips and lonely motel nights alone start a bond between them that may be stronger than either of them had ever expected. AH
Rated: Fiction M – English – Romance/Hurt/Comfort – Edward, Bella – Chapters: 27 – Words: 62,115 – Reviews: 1,916 – Favs: 950 – Follows: 814 – Updated: Dec 17, 2011 – Published: Sep 9, 2011 – Status: Complete – id: 7366855
To reiterate just why I loved this Edward so much, he’s kind, thoughtful, loyal, humble, brave and just downright swoonworthy! He is the Essence of Edward and then some!
When I was compiling my list of wonderful Edwards, I actually was quite surprised when I realized just how many of my favourite Essencewards where actually either Bluecollarwards or work in a profession that doesn’t see them with an Aston in their garage. I shocked myself! LOL
My other favourite Essencewards include:
THE ESSENCE OF EDWARD!
So, let’s hear it ladies. What does the Essence of Edward mean to you?