Wake Me Up

What happens when all you have left is memories? Will you cherish them or regret you can no longer make more with him? Meredith struggles to come to terms that she can't be woken up from the nightmare this time.

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1. When You Wake Me Up

I opened the scrapbook on my lap, flipping through the pages and looking at all the photographs. Each of them had an amazing memory attached to them- and all of them were made with Ed.

A picture of Ed standing in the snow caught my eye. He had a wide grin on his face and his bright red hair was tucked under a wooly hat that his mum had made him. Oh how he hated that hat, but I forced him to wear it because it was so cold and that was the only hat we could find. In the picture he was standing close to me as I took the picture and in his hands was a mini snowman that he had made. He was so proud of it and we kept it on the porch to see how long it would last.

I remembered that winter vividly; we played in the snow all day, our noses and cheeks turning bright pink from the cold. We were laughing and drinking tea constantly as we enjoyed the winter holiday.

I remembered how it got so cold that our heater broke and how nobody could drive out to fix it because of the weather. I smiled as I remembered how mad Ed got because of this. In the end, we had to snuggle up at night to keep warm and it made for some amazing memories.

I turned the page, refreshing my mind with all the memories I had with him. On the next page there was a picture I had taken of a cup of tea Ed had made me. It was during his baking phase when he watched cooking shows religiously and was always trying to impress me with his skills.

That day he had tried to make me a cup of tea with the cool design in the foam. He had studied how to do it for what seemed like hours and it took him forever to actually do it. I remember sitting on the counter as I watched him stick the foam with a toothpick, his tongue sticking out as it always did when he was concentrating.

When he was finished, he handed me the cold cup of tea smiling. He had told me that he was going to make a leaf, but it ended up looking like a bunch of lines. Ed was proud of it though, so I gave him a rewarding kiss and drank the cold cup of tea as he watched me.

On the opposite page there was a Polaroid picture of me. It was taken during one of our many late night movie nights. I was wearing a shirt of Ed’s- he loved me wearing his shirts- and a pair of baggy trackies. I was pulling a pouty face and holding up the Shrek DVD. I loved watching it constantly; it was basically my favorite film and whenever it was my turn to choose what to watch, Ed always knew to put in Shrek.

But that particular night was very devastating for me. Our dog Truman had taken the DVD from the coffee table and ran away with it in his jaw. It made me feel better as I watched Ed chase the tiny dog around our flat. Truman had little legs, but he was deceivingly fast and he knew where all the good hiding places were.

So when Ed finally did manage to catch him, the underside of the DVD was scratched up from Truman’s teeth and completely ruined. Ed kept apologizing to me because he was the one who left it out, but it didn’t really matter what we watched. As long as I had Ed sitting next to me, I was alright. I told him this and he just grinned cheekily at me and wrapped his arms around me, giving me a big sloppy kiss.

I flipped another page of the scrapbook and smiled as I saw a photo of Ed playing Mario Cart with my older brother. As soon as we started dating, Bennett accepted Ed into the Warner family with open arms. They did everything together and they were basically best friends. If I wasn’t with Ed, Ben was. I had a hunch that it was because of Ed’s fiery red hair- Ben always had a fascination with gingers.

On that particular day, Ben came over with his Wii and some games. We both knew well that Ed didn’t like losing, and Ben thought it would be a laugh to introduce him to Mario Cart. The thing is, Ben had been playing that game nonstop for a couple of years now and he was a master at it. Ed never stood a chance against him.

So when Ed lost for what seemed to be the hundredth time, he lost it and threw the controller across the room. He didn’t break anything, but he got really worked up. Of course, Ben was laughing his ass off on the couch. I had to take Ed into our room away from Ben who was cackling like a hyena; we laid on our bed, his arms wrapped around my waist as he took deep breaths to calm himself down.

I kept smiling crazily to myself as I turned another page. My smile faltered when a saw a picture of Ed on the patio surrounded by a cloud of gray smoke. He knew I hated it when he smoked, and he tried to quit many times. But every time he gave it up, the next day I would see him sneak outside with a new box of ciggies.

I knew he wanted to stop. He really did. I knew this because every single time I caught him, he would look so ashamed and disappointed in himself. It pained me to see him so sad, but I hurt me even more when I knew that he was slowly killing himself whenever he took a smoke.

I turned the page and started blushing madly when I saw a picture that Ed had taken. It was of me sleeping, the sunlight streaming on my bare back. I was facing him, my chest hidden behind my bent arms.

I looked so peaceful when I was asleep. Ed told me that every time he woke up to see me next to him, he fell a little bit more in love with me.

That was the first time he told me he was in love with me. He had told me before that he loved me, but that just seemed so much different that being in love. It sounded stronger and more truthful. Feeling love towards someone was nothing compared to being in love with them.

I smiled as I ran my finger over the corner of the photograph. We had put this book together about a year ago, and Ed had said that it was to show to our kids- whenever we had them. He was always talking about what our kids were going to be like; what color hair and eyes, who’s personality they would get, if they would be able to sing.

He told me one late night that he wished they all had my dark blonde hair, his blue eyes and my voice. I had asked him why he wanted them to have my voice, not his- if they had mine, they wouldn’t be able to sing like him. I remembered what he told me, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.

“Meredith, you’re voice is like the voice of all the angels singing in heaven up above. When we go to heaven together, you will put those angels to shame.”

Ed always knew how to make me blush. He told me that I was like an angel; if only he knew that he was my angel.

I looked at another picture and my breath caught in my chest. It was a picture of my engagement ring. The sight of it made me choke up and tears stung my eyes. I remembered the poetic speech Ed gave me on the beach. He always had a way with words- which is probably why his songs became so successful.

I closed the book and kept it on my lap. I moved my hand up to the engagement ring that was attached to a chain that hung around my neck. The wedding was supposed to be next month.

A tear escaped my eye and I moved the scrapbook from my lap on to the bed beside me. I stood up slowly and walked over to the full body mirror that was resting against the wall. Ed was meant to hang it up, but he was gone before he had the chance.

I stared morbidly at my reflection. Parts of my hair was pulled back but most of it fell behind my shoulder in waves. My green eyes were surrounded with dark makeup and around my neck hung the engagement ring. I was wearing a simple black sleeveless dress and black high heels. I hadn’t picked it out- my mum had. The past few days I’ve stayed in my bedroom, lying in bed all day. The sheets were slowly losing his smell so every day I wore an item of his so I could imagine that he was still home with me.

I started to cry quietly again and leaned against our bed. I refused to think of all this stuff as anything else. This was still our flat, our bed, our kitchen, our dog. If I began to think of it as all mine… I don’t think I’d be able to handle it.

The door silently creaked open and Bennett walked in, clad in a black suit. His short blonde hair was disheveled and messy. His head was low and his eyes were sad; he wasn’t a sad person, but exceptions were being made the past few days. He had lost his best friend, I had lost my fiancé.

“You doing okay, Meredith?” He scuffed his feet on the wooden floors as he shuffled over to me.

I shook my head without saying a word and wiped my eyes. How could I be okay? Would I ever be okay again?

“We need to leave now if you want to get to the church in time.” Bennett spoke again and wrapped an arm around my shoulder. He walked me out of the room, neither of us uttering anything. There wasn’t really much to say.

We walked out of the flat complex together and into an awaiting black car. As we rode to the church, Bennett wouldn’t stop sniffing and I knew it was best to leave him be. I stared out the window, my own eyes tearing up and my chin quivering.

How could this be fair? In what world would this be labeled fair on anyone? The world was wrong to take him away. Fate had made a mistake.

My chest was tight as I held back sobs. I was lost- completely and utterly lost without him by my side. I needed him to be with me. I needed his callused hands linked with mine, his familiar smell always close. I wanted to see his bright red hair again and be reminded of how blue his eyes were.

It pained me to come to the realization that I would never see him again. That morning a week ago was the last time I saw him. I didn’t know it at the time, but when he left for the studio that morning, he wasn’t going to come back. He didn’t even make it into the studio.

We stopped suddenly and I looked to see where we were. In front of me were the steps that led up to the large church. It looked morbid under the cloudy sky and I was thankful for that. I wouldn’t be able to bear it if it was sunny today because he wouldn’t be here with me to cherish the sun.

My heels clicked on the concrete as I walked up the steps to the church entrance. Everything around me was quiet as people mourned the loss. I walked into the open door and made my way to the front row of seats that were reserved for family. I could feel eyes on me, but I didn’t dare look up.

His mum, dad and brother were there, as well as every other variation of family. I smiled weakly at their hauntingly familiar red hair but immediately wiped it away. I sat down, Bennett in the row behind me. He placed a comforting hand on my shoulder and I took a deep, shaky breath.

I tried my best to keep my eyes trained on the floor in front of me. If I looked up, I would see that big wooden box that I dreaded. I was told that it was going to be nailed shut- the car was going so fast when it hit him.

Tears streamed down my face freely and I heard muffled cries all around me. I glanced over at Ed’s mum as she wept into a handkerchief, her husband and son consoling her. I could tell that they were both holding back tears themselves, but they were trying to stay strong for her.

I heard shuffling up front and I looked up to see the preacher coming up to the podium. He cleared his throat, catching the attention of everyone here.

“If Ed’s fiancé would like to say a few words, now is the time.” He turned to me, his features full of sincerity. He had probably done this a thousands times, but I could never imagine getting used to this.

I stood up shakily, using the bench to support me. My legs felt weak beneath me and I felt light headed. I was too young for this sort of pain. I was only nineteen- Ed was only twenty one. I was too young to be faced with a tragedy like this. I was supposed to be traveling the world, studying at University, having fun and meeting people.

I was way too young to be giving a speech at my fiancé’s funeral.

I leaned against the podium and looked out at all the people that showed up for Ed. He may have died young, but he was loved by many.

“Ed was a great man. Everyone who met him instantly loved him. I know I did.” I look a deep breath and clenched my eyes shut. I imagined he was right beside me, telling me everything was going to be okay. Before, I said he was my angel, and now he really was.

“Earlier today I was looking at some old pictures and I remembered how much Ed loved to have fun. He was always joking around, always making music and good memories. He loved music- it was his passion. And even though he’s gone, he will still be with us through the music he left behind.”

Everyone in the room was crying now and so was I. I could see old friends and new friends, cousins and even fans.

I began to do what I imagined Ed would do to cheer everyone up. I began to sing.

“'Cause maybe you're loveable maybe you're my snowflake and your eyes turn from green to gray and in the winter I'll hold you in a cold place and you should never cut your hair 'cause I love the way you flick it off your shoulder”

As I sang, I saw five familiar, teary eyed boys stand up in the front rows and began singing with me. The idea caught and soon everyone was singing along to Ed’s song.

“And you will never know just how beautiful you are to me but maybe I'm just in love when you wake me up”

He may not be here physically anymore, but I still have the memories. I will love him forever and nothing can take away those feelings. It really kills me that we never got to spend the rest of our lives together like we were planning on, but he wouldn’t want me to dwell on his death. He would want to me live my life fully for the both of us and not let a single moment pass me by.

And I know that he’s smiling down from heaven right now, watching as we remember him through music.

~*~

To see the outfit that she wears, go to--> http://www.polyvore.com/one_shot_for_theysaymeredith/set?id=54690023

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