This fic was the fic I always wanted to write. The one that I began literally the moment I posted my first one-shot, “The Talk.” Then it was called Absolution, I was planning to write it simply from the beginning of Carlisle’s life to the confrontation with the Volturi in Breaking Dawn, and I had no sense of the incredible depth of the character I’d just stumbled onto.

Fortunately, I waited. Waited until I knew where I wanted to go, waited until I’d figured out the right structure, waited until I knew Carlisle better. And I think the story that emerged is all the richer for it. Most importantly, waiting gave me time for a lot of wonderful people to come into my life who have been utterly invaluable in the process of writing this fic.

My beta, Openhome, saw me through two full years of writing this fic and then some, correcting historical errors, correcting canon errors, telling me where things didn’t mesh, where I was being too repetitive, and much, much more. Many times over the course of this fic, the thing for which I would get the most compliments in a chapter would inevitably be something she had told me needed to be changed in the draft, and the change made the chapter so significantly stronger that everyone noticed. And along the way, she went from reader, to beta, to one of my dearest friends. A friend whom you can trust with every aspect of your creative self is worth all the treasure in the world. So I thank her first and foremost.

I also owe a lot of thanks to Viva Viva and Julie for betaing the early parts of this novel; to twitina and sleepyvalentina for holding my hand and prereading chunks when I was struggling to write them; to malianani for her wrenchingly thorough evaluations of each chapter that always left me seeing connections in my own work that I hadn’t even noticed I’d made; to kittandchips for always asking the right questions, and to minisinoo for helping with initial sources.

And of course, I owe a great debt to my readers—those of you who were willing to go on a two-year journey through a book the length of Twilight and with barely a hint of Edward and no Bella at all. To you all who love Carlisle as much as I do, or who’ve come to love him as much, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

As always, I wish you happy reading.

With my thanks,


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