Renesmee sat towards the front of the large wagon. There was another woman sitting to her right holding the reigns. The smell of the horses had been bothering her since they left the station in Montana, but she never said anything. All the other women did enough complaining about the smell on their own without Renesmee helping. She had managed for most of the trip to distract herself with reading be it Persuasion, Wuthering Heights, or any other book she had stuffed in her bag that her parents had been willing to let her have. They only were reluctant to part with any of their literature because they'd been adamant Renesmee not travel west. "Why bother?" Edward had asked her. "Your family's here in Chicago. Why go out to the middle of nowhere?" Bella had asked. Her aunts, uncles, and grandparents had made their own objections as well, but Renesmee had already made up her mind.
She'd spent most of her life with her family. They'd moved around from Chicago to New York to Milwaukee and throughout the northern United States, never staying anywhere longer than four or five years. It mostly had to do with her, she knew. Prior to her mother and father falling in love, the Cullens would stay in any given place at least a period of ten years because they could get away with pretending to be in their thirties. Once people believed Carlisle was forty, that's when they left. But once Renesmee was born, they firstly had to leave so Bella's family wouldn't question their daughter's "death". She couldn't very well stay in the city where her family was when they believed her dead.
After that, though, they always left as soon as people began asking why Renesmee wasn't married. For the past forty years it had been the same thing: "She's so lovely, Bella. You simply must let me introduce her to my son," or "She's still not married? How old is she?" As far as anyone ever knew, Renesmee was just shy of eighteen. She'd been turning eighteen for the past thirty five years. She'd decided she was sick of it and wanted to be on her own. Edward of course knew she'd been planning to leave. He'd been trying to convince her otherwise since the thought popped into her head. But alas, she applied to be sent west as a mail order bride and hoped that whoever she was to marry would allow her to work as a nurse at whatever medical facility was available in Olympia. Granted, Renesmee wouldn't be able to stay in one place for her whole life, but she'd get at least 15 years or so out of this location before faking her own death and moving on: the reverse of a Black Widow perhaps. Instead of killing her husbands, she'd leave them as dead. It couldn't be much worse than moving around whenever anyone asked about Renesmee's lack of a husband at her age.
Her family had promised they'd come to visit her in three months time when she'd be certain to have arrived in Washington and settled in a home of her own. She could introduce them to her husband! She'd know him by then. Renesmee looked to her right at her companion who seemed on the verge of sleep after so many hours on the road. They were still several hours away from Olympia and they'd not stopped in a town for rest since Seattle four days ago. Renesmee looked in the back of the wagon where Caevia slept and couldn't help but smile. The woman was undoubtedly far older than her despite looking close to Renesmee's age, yet she was more a friend than anyone she'd known in her whole life. One of Carlisle's old patients, who'd been unable to pay for his services, offered him Caevia as a way to appease the debt. Carlisle, of course, had intended to refuse until Renesmee had seen Caevia. She'd been so fascinating to her. She'd never seen a Native American before, especially not one so tan and from so far south as the arid deserts near Mexico. Once Renesmee had expressed so much interest, Carlisle agreed to take Caevia. Her previous owner had mocked her, saying she claimed to be of a people called the Tistihlal that could turn into birds and had been cursed with lasting youth and eternal life. Carlisle laughed with the man, but the Cullens believed Caevia. The fact that she'd stayed exactly the same for almost forty years just testified to her story. Not wanting to bother Caevia, Renesmee looked at the woman to her right again.
"Do you have a picture of your future husband?" Renesmee asked the woman. She snapped out of her daze and smiled.
"I'm afraid not. Did you get one?"
"No," Renesmee said, shaking her head gently. "They told me his name is Peter Wallis, he has brown hair and he has a farm outside Olympia."
"I was told my husband to be is a preacher: Reverend Lesley."
"You'll be in the city then," Renesmee said. "I would love for that. Hopefully the farm isn't too far out of the city. I still wanted to be a nurse if I can help it."
"You're a nurse? There're never too many of those," the woman smiled. "I'm sure he'll be happy to let you work. It would be a disservice to the town if he didn't."
Renesmee smiled but didn't answer. She suddenly smelled something strange: something sweet. She knew that kind of smell. She reached for the gun in the back. It wouldn't do much more than stall the vampire and spook the horses so they would run, but that's all they really needed. The woman asked why Renesmee was reaching for the gun, but she ignored the woman and focused on the scent. But then, she realized there was a strong woodsy scent following the clawing sweet smell. Then she heard what sounded like a pack of wolves. She was so confused. Why would a vampire be running from wolves of all things? Wolves are hardly a trouble even in great numbers. Shortly after realizing the smells approaching, she caught the briefest of images of a man running past their caravan. None of the women so much as noticed, but Renesmee had. What the women did notice, however, were the three massive wolves that narrowly avoided running right into their wagons. Screams echoed and mixed with the loud roars of the wolves. Some of the wolves ran right back into the woods while one reddish brown wolf stayed a moment, seeming to roar in the direction of the vampire in pure frustration. Then the wolf looked right at Renesmee prepared to roar at her too, but what instead escaped was the slightest whimper. She was still holding the gun and had even aimed it at the large beast, yet the eyes that stared at her weren't that of an animal. They were a man's eyes, black and piercing. She felt drawn to them and she couldn't explain why. After staring at her a moment, the women continued to scream again. One shot towards the reddish brown wolf that had been staring at Renesmee. The bullet missed and the reddish brown wolf ran back into the woods with the others that had followed him.
"What happened?" Caevia asked, forcing herself towards the front to look outside.
"Wolves startled the horses," Renesmee answered. Then she looked at the other woman and attempted to calm her down. When she'd managed to calm her down, she walked around the caravan to look after all the other women in the group. When no one seemed more than frazzled, Renesmee managed to get the caravan moving again and the rest of the trip went by without further incident.
When they finally at long last arrived at Olympia, they were greeted by the Reverend Lesley and a few other men of town, most of whom anxiously awaited to meet their future wives. Renesmee watched, Caevia at her side, as several of the women were introduced to their fiancés, but no one came forward asking for her. Eventually, a very tall brunette man walked forward and pulled his hat off respectfully. Renesmee curtsied for the man as he approached and it was after that when the man finally spoke.
"Would you happen to be Renesmee Cullen?" the man asked.
"Yes, that's me. Are you Peter?"
"No, I'm here on his behalf. I'm John Rogers. I own the general store here in town. Don't be upset. It's my fault your fiancé isn't here. He has a nice collection of apple trees on his property and I told him I wanted them harvested and ready to sell."
"I understand," Renesmee answered. "When will I get to meet him?"
"I'm taking you to see him now. I'll bring you back after an hour so you can stay with the other ladies at the lodge. As to when your wedding will be is entirely up to you and Peter. As far as I know, several of the men here want to get married as soon as their fiancés are off the wagon. Reverend Lesley is looking at a busy night," the man chuckled. "I suppose his own wedding will have to wait a while. I can't speak for Peter, but I can tell you he's anxious to meet you."
"I'm anxious to meet him to." Renesmee smiled at the man genuinely and he responded in kind with the same smile.
"So who's this?" the man asked, finally looking at Caevia.
"She's my servant. You don't think Peter will mind her do you?"
"I doubt it. More hands to help out around the house never hurt any farmer or farmer's wife. Come on. I'll take you to the farm now."
Admittedly, Renesmee had been hoping for some time to relax, but she only smiled and followed John to his cart. Caevia hitched a ride in the back where some hay rested while Renesmee sat up front with John as he made small talk with her. He told Renesmee about the pigs Peter raised and how he let them eat the apples that fell from his apple tree so their meat would be really sweet once they were put on the market in town. Renesmee confided that she had been a nurse back in Chicago which John was quite impressed with. The actual ride to the farm took them about thirty five minutes. If Peter had a horse she could ride into town, it shouldn't take her too long. Theoretically she could just run on her own and be there even faster, but that wasn't really open to her. When Renesmee, John and Caevia arrived at the farm, Renesmee was pleased with what she saw. There was a humble house atop a hill and it was surrounded by scattered apple trees. The outside of the property was gated, undoubtedly due entirely to the pigs that roamed the area freely. The dark green of the trees surrounded the back of the house. She saw out of the corner of her eye some pigs nibbling on acorns they found scattered about. Some parts of the farm had large dirt puddles where a lot of the pigs were currently congregated due to the heat and humidity. She and the pigs shared the sentiment that it was far too hot and she couldn't wait to strip out of these heavy clothes later that night at the lodge. John stopped the cart right at the gate, got off, opened the gate, and got back on the cart so he could drive it through. He closed the gate back up and finally they rode the rest of the way up the hill to the house. When they reached the house, another man was approaching. He had to be Peter. He indeed had brown hair and was tanned from years of working out in the fields. He wasn't a breathtaking man, but he was pleasant enough. He didn't look too old either: early thirties maybe. One thing was certain; he was happy to see her. He had a wide grin on his face, eagerness brightening his smile.
"That's Peter," John assured. "He's been looking forward to meeting you."
"I can tell," Renesmee answered as she scooted down from the cart. Caevia stayed in the back with the hay, content to get more sleep while Renesmee got acquainted with her future husband. Peter finally reached Renesmee and John, but when he got there he realized he didn't know exactly what to say. She was certainly a beauty. She was more than he'd ever hoped for and looking at her bright red tinted brown hair, her bright brown eyes, and her sweet face was making him nervous.
"Hello Renesmee." Peter scratched his head. "I said your name correctly right?"
"Yes, you did. It's a pleasure to finally meet you Peter. I heard good things about you."
"I'm afraid what I've heard of you hasn't done you justice. All I was told was you were a nurse in Chicago."
"I was told you own a farm and have brown hair."
Peter chuckled, "Well, they didn't lie to you." They all shared a laugh.
"They certainly didn't," John said. "So how goes harvesting those apples?"
"It's going fine. I have plenty for you to take now before you leave if you want."
"Not if you have more apples to give me."
"You have to let me keep enough for me and the pigs, John. Besides, the more apples I give you, the more money you owe me."
John took in a whistling breath through his teeth, "That is true. Fine, I'll take what you've got now. I will be back for more, though, mark my words." John looked at Renesmee. "Anyway, back to more important things. Have you had lunch yet? I haven't. I say we let your fiancé show off how good of a cook she is."
Renesmee smiled, "I'd be happy to." Renesmee looked back towards the cart. "Caevia, would you help me?" Caevia nodded and hopped out of the cart.
"Who's this?" Peter asked. She couldn't help but notice the mildly acidic tone in his voice.
"She's my servant Caevia. She was a gift from one of my grandpa's patients and she's been with us ever since." Caevia, rather than say anything, bowed her head respectfully.
"She's never been any trouble?" Peter asked, still hesitant. "Forgive my prodding, but I've had one too many Indians sneak onto my property to steal my apples, so I'm a little wary of them."
"She'll be no trouble at all," Renesmee assured. She decided this conversation needed to be over so she motioned for Caevia to follow her up to the house and got right to cooking the men something for lunch. Peter insisted Caevia eat in the corner when lunch was served. Now wasn't the time, but Renesmee made a note that she would have to break him of this phobia he seemed to have of Native Americans. But for the time being, Renesmee focused on fooling the men into thinking she was eating the lunch she had prepared while holding up a conversation and getting to know Peter better.
Much further away along the coast of the pacific, the reddish wolf returned to his tribe. He stopped in the trees before entering the clearing near the water and put on his pale animal pelt pants and tied them up. When he went into the clearing, no one initially paid attention to him until a young boy talking to his sister notice him and ran over.
"Jacob," the boy said in excitement, "you're finally back! Where've you been?"
"Hunting," Jacob said. "Where's the rest of the pack, Seth?"
"They're fishing," he said, pointing towards the water. Jacob looked over at them as Embry was, indeed, fishing while Quil was taking a nap on the beach.
"Go get them for me."
After nodding, Seth ran off towards the beach to grab the members of the pack. It took a minute for him to wake up Quil and Embry eventually had to help. When Quil was eventually awake (whether he liked it or not), they were led to Jacob with Seth in the lead. The men eventually told Seth to go help his sister Leah with whatever she needed. Seth initially refused. He knew he'd never inherit the wolf spirit, being in no way a descendant of Taha Aki like the rest of them were, but he had contented himself to being a close companion to the pack. When they reached Jacob, he again asked Seth to let the pack talk alone. Seth eventually complied and walked away, leaving the pack alone.
"I found her," Jacob said when they were alone.
"You did?" Embry asked, getting a nod of confirmation from Jacob.
"So what are you planning to do now that you know where she is? You didn't really have a plan to speak of past finding her when you left a few days ago."
"I still don't have much of a plan to speak of," Jacob mumbled, scratching the back of his head. He took a deep breath before making a proposal. He'd thought long and hard about what to do but nothing good came to mind. This was the only solution he could come up with: "I know where she's staying. We wait until she's alone and when she's alone, we'll sneak into the home, take her and run."
"We're going to take her?" Quil said in a hushed voice but still very surprised.
"What else do you suggest I do, Quil? I can't just walk up to her and start talking to her. She'd scream and ran away from me."
"She won't exactly take well to being kidnapped and forced into an unfamiliar home either," Quil said. "Your father will kill you if you bring that woman here."
"He'll understand," Jacob said. "He imprinted on mom. He should understand it chooses you." Jacob groaned. He would've rather imprinted on anyone else, anyone, even his cousin or his sisters, anyone except a pale face. He complained about them enough. In that moment, he couldn't help but look towards Leah and Seth, remembering when they'd first shown up in the village.
Jacob remembered his mother telling him several stories about his aunt Uileila. Sara exalted her sister's happy personality, her bright and loving smile, and all the stories from when they were young and would play together. Sara was always sad though when she spoke about her sister. Uileila had run away when she was young and in love with a pale face from Forks. No one had known about the affair until the night Uileila said goodbye to Sara, saying that she was running away to be with her pale faced lover and be his wife. Sara had begged her sister to reconsider, but Uileila couldn't be dissuaded. Sara had told her mother and father but by then it was too late. It had been the last Sara or anyone else in the tribe had heard or seen from Uileila since. Yet years after Uileila ran away, Seth and Leah came running to the tribe begging for shelter with their mother's people. Sara begged Seth and Leah, "Please, where is Uileila? Tell me, where is my sister?" A very young, barely a teenager, Leah and a mere six year old Seth had to tell the story of how their father beat her to death and would've done so to them too had Leah not grabbed her father's gun from his belt and shot him right between the eyes. Sara had taken the two in as her own. Uileila would've wanted it that way. Jacob remembered their faces, the looks of terror that took years to melt away. He could never forgive the injustice that happened to his cousins at the hands of a pale faced man that seduced a young, impressionable girl. Yet Jacob's disdain for the pale faces ran deeper still than even that. The people of Forks had invited themselves onto the land claiming it as their own. They called the land "Washington" now. They had imposed themselves upon the Quileutes and their allies. They were forced to give up their white slaves and be reduced to a small people with a small area of land far away from the "good people of Forks". Because enslaving a black man is fine, but the moment it's a pale face, it's wrong. Jacob and the rest of the tribe were hearing tales of tribes from the east that had embraced the pale faces as brothers only to be spat on and forced into isolation like infected rats. They were two faced devils that were slowly robbing them of their resources and their names. The mayor of Forks had given Jacob's father a white name, William, because Kayechiwetchwe "was simply too hard to remember". The English names were infesting the tribe and it left Jacob seething. The fact his was a white name was all the worse. Yet here Jacob was, imprinted to a pale faced woman. He could only hope she would be the counterargument to all the pale faces he'd encountered before.
"I'll need one of you to help me," Jacob finally said. "Embry, you stay here and do patrol for tonight. Quil, you come with me."
"We're leaving now?" Quil asked. "I promised Claire I would show her how to debone a fish."
"She can wait," Jacob hissed. "Did her parents have to name her Claire? What's wrong with a good Quileute name?"
"She's perfect no matter what her name, Jacob," Quil said defensively. "When you have kids, you can name them whatever you want, but until then you leave Claire alone. Honestly Jacob, she's only five."
"She's not standing here listening now is she?" Jacob rubbed his face as Quil began to argue. Eventually, Jacob held a fist in the air to silence his pack brother. "Fine, we'll wait until tonight. But we are leaving tonight. And neither of you are to tell anyone of this. Understood?" Both Quil and Embry nodded their heads, but eagerly ran from Jacob wanting to be away from him. It was said that the imprint was supposed to calm a wolf down but at the moment it was only making Jacob more irritated. He already loved the woman and yet he didn't even know her name. He only knew that when he'd looked into her brown eyes, he felt his world shift to a different center of focus and he was in love. The rest he would have to figure out as he went along.