Disclaimer: All characters belong to Stephanie Meyer. The plot is all mine.


Meanwhile in Seattle …

A young man flailed for his life as he tried to fight his attacker. His screams were unheard as pressure was exerted on his windpipe, leaving him gaging and clawing for breath.

His eyes were bloodshot, and his face grew bluer and bluer.

But his attacker didn't care as he overpowered the man in strength. Pinning him against the wall, and sinking his teeth into the jugular. Slowly draining his life's blood from the veins and into the attacker's voracious mouth.

The seconds ticked by, the resistance from the victim grew weak. His green eyes turned murky as they rolled to the back of his sweat matted head. His body slumped. He was no more.

The creature stepped back, releasing the victim as he collapsed onto himself in a heap on the floor. The victim was now nothing more than a sack of meat and bones.

This was Marcus' third feast. Usually he would be satisfied with drinking from one prey. Now he couldn't quench the thirst with just one.

Demetri stepped forward, with a wary realization of this matter. And reached into his jacket pocket to pull out a handkerchief. He graciously handed the article to his Master.

Marcus eyed the offering and took it to wipe the remaining blood from the corner of his mouth. He returned it to Demetri. Which the Tracker took back, folded the blood stain on itself, and tucked it back into his coat.

Demetri was at a loss for words. And Alec was slightly alarmed. They didn't know how to behave around the introverted King – They understood Aro. They understood Caius. But no one took the time to understand Marcus.

He was always the leader at the back. Overshadowed by the flamboyant, power hungry dark-haired King. And his cruel and merciless blonde brother.

For all they knew, the vampire that had 'awoken' that rainy night could have been a slumbering beast. He certainly killed like one. Ripping apart the bodies of those humans – when draining their blood could have been simpler, cleaner, and nourishingly fulfilling. But no, he spilled their blood like it was garbage on the side of the street.

Alec and Demetri only knew how to proceed with a situation when they could read into the individual's personality. Except – Hah! Joke's on them – last week Marcus didn't have a personality.

Now, it's like they were watching a blank book being written right before their very eyes. When they were diligently trying to discover and understand what is happening on the current page, how can they predict what is going to happen on the next page?

In their wildest thoughts, they didn't expect their mission to take such a loop-dee-loop roundabout when Aro presented them with their assignments. Because now their metaphorical walk in the park just turned into a high-wire amateur hour.

Alec, being technically the youngest, kept looking to Demetri. The Tracker subtly nodded to his partner, silently expressing everything would be alright. Then he returned his attention to his silent Leader.

Marcus still had his eyes engrossed in the lifeless victim. His now bright, freshly fed, red eyes dragged to the surrounded area he stood in. It was a tiny one room apartment. Half of the room was decorated in rows of digital screens and a long table with keyboards and empty beer bottles scattered on the surface. The other part of the room was a kitchen area, an exact three feet distance from the wall of computers. With dishes forming several leaning towers in and around the sink, looking like they haven't been washed in many months. Take-out cartons neatly balanced on top of them. It was the definition of a human pig pen.

Marcus looked at the barren, paint chipped, walls. No photos. Either the deceased didn't have loved ones, or he was forgotten by the world. All apparent by the love and attention he gave to the wall of technology. Except, the human wasn't the neighborhood friendly techno-fanatic. That is, if hacking into corporate online funds, and billionaire's savings and transferring the money to his off-shore accounts considered charity work. Then he was nothing more than a modern day thief. A Cybercriminal. Now, he was one less useless existence on this earth.

Without warning Marcus suddenly turned to face his loyal Elite guard members. Demetri and Alec were currently with him while the other grunts were securing the area outside until the Master was done feeding.

Marcus stared pointedly at Demetri. And the Tracker, feeling the heavy scrutiny of his King on his person, stood a little taller. His gut told him it was now the make or break moment. And like all the other moments where he needed to pledge his allegiance to the other two leaders. He now had to prove his loyalty to his Master.

Demetri, confident in his swagger and his smooth words, began with; "My liege, please kno-" Before the taupe haired vampire could finish his sentence. His Master reached out and grasped the young man by the throat. Tight enough that he dug his sharp nails into the Tracker's skin, causing him to hiss in pain.

Alec took a step back as he watched the two men. He was never cleared any permission nor authority to sedate his Master from the brothers. But if he felt that his Master was going to end Demetri then Aro would certainly not be happy if Alec stood idle and watched.

However, it would seem that Marcus merely gripped Demetri tightly. Had he wanted to off the Tracker then he could have easily snapped his head right off his shoulders. Apparently, speed now came naturally to the passive King. And he was much quicker than his lethargic appearance suggested.

"M-m-my lord! … Please .. I d-don't m-m-m-mean to of-fend .." Demetri stuttered. It was refreshing to shake down the constantly poised Tracker.

Marcus' red ruby eyes peering into Demetri's wide gaze was like he could see right into his entire existence. And all Demetri wanted was to say whatever his Master wanted to hear just so that he would release him.

Because even if Marcus halted digging his nails further into the other vampire's neck. He still kept the pressure to the point where his nails cracked the stone hard skin without allowing it to heal and refusing to let the skin connect. And the longer the wound was left open the more exposure it permitted for the silvery syrup of the venom to ooze from the fractures like a clear liquid with specks of shimmering dust. Which when it passed on the open skin it would hurt like a motherfucker!

Marcus watched as the other vampire's face began to pinch in distress and pain. And the younger one, it would seem he didn't know what to do with himself.

Silently, the taciturn Leader lifted his other hand and pulled from around Demetri's collar the Volturi insignia necklace, and placed it to rest on top of the Tracker's dark robes. Visible even for the little boy-witch to see.

Very clearly, Marcus tapped on the necklace with a pale finger and then pressed that same finger to his lips.

Demetri's eyes widened in understanding. Even a chimpanzee would have understood what the docile Leader silently tried to convey.

The Volturi crest didn't just symbolize the coven's supremacy to all other covens. It also represented the mark of ownership from their most dominant Leader, and founder of the coven. Aro.

And Marcus wanted, no … demanded of the two Elite guards to not report to their Leader in Volterra. Which went against everything they believed as their loyalty was bonded to Aro. However, when his brother had you by the throat, you compromise for the sake of survival.

With as much dignity and humility one could muster, Demetri spoke up despite the injury to his neck. "We … We won't say anything. You have our l-loyalty, Master – We will … follow your lead!" The pain in his neck was becoming too unbearable.

But by the gods, Marcus seemed satisfied as he released Demetri. The Tracker fell to his knees in front of the King and tried not to touch his neck while it began mending itself.

Marcus's bloody eyes snapped to the younger vampire that remained quiet and still through the entire altercation. But when he became the center of his Leader's attention, he honestly didn't want what happened to Demetri to happen to him. It looked really horrible and painful. Alec bowed his head. "My lord. I am your humble servant." He said, pressing his lips and hoping he spoke fittingly.

The silent Leader walked past the two guards and exited the small apartment. Demetri and Alec shared an owl-eyed look before they relaxed the tension in their joints. They collected themselves and followed their Master.

They just hoped what they had to do didn't bite them in the ass later in the future. And they were even prepared to prey to their many gods that if Aro learned of their discretion and lack of reports, and the reason behind it. Then at least he would be lenient with them as they made colossal progress that hadn't been achieved in nearly a millennium.


Later that night, Bella sat down with Charlie in their dining room. They had a peaceful meal that Bella had deliciously prepared. Charlie rarely came home that past week. And Bella couldn't help but worry as her dad refused to let her know what he was working on.

He always babied her and tried to shield her eyes from the ugliness of his job. But all she wanted was to know that her father was being safe. Because if a case he worked on took so much of his time then it must be something really bad.

But never the less, since neither she nor Charlie were so verbally expressive with their feelings. She at least wanted him to come home to a nice home cooked meal. She really frowned upon him always going to that diner.

"This is really great, kid." Charlie commented about the meal as Bella piled a second serving onto his plate.

Bella blushed. Renee hardly complimented her cooking. "After your long day at the station, you earned it." She replied.

"How was school today?" Charlie asked.

Bella smiled widely. "Wonderful! It was sunny today. We got to sit outside during lunch."

"Is that so – then what?" Charlie half smirked at seeing his daughter's face light up.

"Then Angela and Jessica made plans to go to the beach in .. umm .. La Push, I think it was called?" Bella tilted her head trying to remember if she got the name correctly.

Charlie nodded. "Yeah, it's down by the reservation. It's close to Billy's house. Did you go with them?"

"No. I stayed behind."

Charlie lifted his eyes from his food to look at his daughter. "How come, Bells?"

"They wanted to go there to …" Bella rolled her eyes. "… get a nice tan so they can look good for the Spring Dance – I just decided to do my homework instead."

"So, you are still boycotting the dance?" He asked.

Bella groaned. "I hate dances. I hate dressing up! Besides, school dances are so overrated anyway."

Charlie shrugged. "Well hey, I'm not gonna change your mind about it, sport. Saves me the trouble of having to frighten some poor boy when I open the door and welcome him in our home while casually holding a shotgun."

"Dad!" Bella giggled and gently shoved her father shoulder before she collected her plate and placed it in the sink.

She then went to the living room and flipped on the News channel. She wanted to see if tomorrow was also going to be a sunny day. However, after the weather man gave his report, Bella's shoulders slightly sagged. She switched the TV off and went back into the kitchen to clean the dishes.

Looks like it was back to overcast and sunless days again.


Next day after school ended, Bella walked to her truck in a very grumpy mood. With a blush that stuck to her face the entire day.

She felt completely embarrassed and horrified! Literally every guy in her class tried to hit her up to go to the dance. And one by one she had to turn them all down, very gently, and cringed on the inside after she walked away after each rejection.

The only two people that didn't ask Bella out – thankfully – were Ben and Mike. As they already asked Angela and Jess to the dance.

Bella nearly sang once the last bell sounded off. She couldn't wait to run to her truck and go home for some R and R. Today they had volleyball in their P.E. class and she felt bruised and battered all over every time she missed serving the ball over the net.

She made it to her truck without running into any hopeful male classmates. She opened the door and threw her bag on the passenger seat. She was just about to get in when someone spoke behind her.

"Hi Bella!"

Bella jumped and clutched her heart as she turned around to face Alice Cullen. Who, a second ago, wasn't even anywhere near her.

Alice frowned at Bella's reaction. "Are you okey?"

"Yes, I am fine. Thank you for asking." Bella said in the politest, yet dismissive way possible – As in, She wasn't in the greatest mood to linger in the school's parking lot for fear of being targeted by another random stray teenage boy. She just wanted to leave as soon as possible. However, the girl standing opposite Her didn't seem to get the memo.

"So … did you get a dress yet for the dance?" Alice asked.

Bella bit her lip. 'Great, not her too.'

"No." She simply replied. Her eyes scanning the parking lot for any approaching optimistic males.

"Oh, why?" The pixie asked.

"Because I am not going to the dance." Bella blurted out.

Alice's eyes widened. "Why not? It's going to be fun!"

The Girl replied, "I have my reasons – Thank you for stopping by to say hi, but I have to go."

Without looking back at Alice, Bella turned around and jumped into her truck the moment she spotted one of the football players headed in her direction. She reversed her truck and immediately left the campus.

Alice stomped her heel on the pavement. She just couldn't seem to strike any good merits with the Girl.

But that was all about to change very soon.


Later that evening, as the sky began to darken. Marcus found himself yet again at that dainty little white house. He didn't know why he returned, only that his feet led him there.

His two elite guards were close, yet not close enough to be within earshot. Marcus liked his privacy. And made it adamantly clear to his followers.

His ears were listening in on the noises in the house. Only one set of feet were skittering inside. And in the driveway there was only one cherry-red vehicle parked.

The Girl was home alone.

And She appeared to be running all over the house for some reason, and mumbling to Herself. She went upstairs then went back down again, slamming doors and drawers behind Her. What was wrong with Her?

Suddenly the Girl went outside and ran to Her truck. She didn't spot Marcus yet, as he was concealed within the shadows. She opened the driver's side door and kept looking under the seats.

For a moment, Marcus scrutinized the Girl and her general appearance. She wore clothes fitting for a girl of her generation, distressed jeans and a long white shirt.

But what he found odd is that She seemed to grow her hair longer than most of the human female's preferences – At least that's based on his judgment by the female victims that were brought to their castle.

Back in his time, the women Marcus used to see only cared about their appearance as women were not granted the liberty to aspire to any other achievements beyond finding suitable prospects for marriage. Their clothes, their jewelry, and their hair were the only thing that mattered. It was a sign of the girl's status and how well she was being looked after by her parents. The more she was groomed, the higher her rank showed in the nobility hierarchy – That tradition, however, died hundreds of years ago.

So then why did this Girl inconvenience herself with such long hair? He didn't know, but he supposed that it did make Her look pretty in some way. There were still cultures that exist to this day that saw long hair as a sign of beauty. Unfortunately for Her, she lived in the wrong society.

Marcus' jaw clenched. He didn't know why he came here. But he knew he didn't come just to ogle the Human as he hid in the shadows like a depraved deviant.

The Girl was still preoccupied with searching for whatever She was looking for inside her, somewhat masculine, vehicle.

Marcus stepped out of the darkness and walked a little bit forward. While the Girl still had her back to him. Despite how deliberately loud and slow he made his footsteps resonate, it was still muted by the outdoors's ambiance for the Girl to hear and sense his presence. Also, he foolishly realized he was walking on soft grass. And unless the Girl had supersensitive hearing, she was ignorant to the fact that there was a man standing behind her.

The reserved Leader needed to assert his presence to Her. But how? As luck would have it, there were pieces of twigs scattered on the lawn from the large maple tree growing beside the house. A moderately sized piece of twig lay beside the Leader's pristine shoes.

Very deliberately, he lifted his heel and severely stepped on the wood, snapping it loudly in half. That did the trick.

The Girl jumped and turned around in the same beat to where the sound came from.

He half expected Her to either be offended or scared that Marcus came out of nowhere only to stand silently behind her – worst case scenario She would be enraged that Marcus imposed his presence on her at such an unexpected hour.

But that was actually Her fault in some way. She was the one who presented him with an open invitation last time he came to Her. And if She sent him away then that's that. He would leave and never return.

However, the odd Girl astounded him even further with her response.

Her heart-shaped face transformed from a startled surprise to a ravishing, blush induced, smile.

Marcus stood corrected. She wasn't 'pretty in some way' as he thought a moment ago. She was gorgeous. That smile was as inviting as a warm bath on a cold blizzard night.

The Volturi King stood there entranced by Her, and he would have remained there for hours even if the Girl didn't speak up and pluck him so suddenly out of his internal dwam.

She whispered in wonder. "You actually came back – I didn't think you would, but you did. I'm so happy!" by the end of her sentence she nearly jumped in delight. Nearly.

She didn't need to say how happy she was. Marcus could clearly see it on Her face. As not even an eclipse could dim down Her sunny optimism.

Feeling vaguely uneasy standing there while the Girl beamed at him, Marcus tilted his head slightly to look curiously inside the Girl's vehicle.

Seeing where the man's eyes went, the Girl stepped to the side to allow him a better view. "Oh … I was looking for my phone. I might have dropped it here but I have no clue. I searched the entire house, though I couldn't find it. And the battery is dead so I can't call it." She explained.

Without further fuss Marcus walked over to her truck, bent down, and looked under the driver's side seat. Instantly his sharp eyes spotted the shiny black rectangular device behind the seat's adjustment gears. His deft fingers plucked the smartphone and he stood back up again and handed the Girl her technology between two fingers like he was handing her a piece of wet tissue.

The Girl opened her hands and the mysterious man dropped the phone into her waiting grasp. She clutched it to her chest and rewarded the man with that million-dollar smile of hers.

"My hero." She suddenly said. She probably meant it in a satirical sense.

She really was a strange girl. If only She knew what Marcus truly was. Her opinion might dramatically change.

A cold breeze suddenly blew past them and the Girl, realizing she was still outside, shivered strongly. "It's so cold!" She said.

She turned to walk towards the house, but before she took a step She asked the handsome gentleman. "Would you like to come inside?"

Marcus was conflicted. On one hand, he felt the need to backhand the girl across the face for inviting a predator carelessly into her home. On the other hand, a part of him was still intrigued that even though she could now see his, freshly fed, ruby red eyes even clearer than last time, she still didn't recoil from him.

Why?

If he rejected Her invitation, then he may never know. And technically, he still hasn't exposed his secret per se – There could be many speculations on what sort of creature in human form that could possess red eyes. She could easily assume he was a Jinn if she believed in those creatures. As they were just as real and more often seen by humans.

There were also rare, and documented, syndromes of people with bloody irises.

So Marcus would be impressed to know that if this Girl had certain knowledge on these facts, then She simply wasn't judging Marcus on his appearance. But rather only on his actions. That would be considered quite mature for someone of Her age.

Marcus looked at the Girl, who grew a bit nervous when he didn't do anything after She invited him, except stand there and ponder her offer. He knew he was taking a risk being around Her. But he came all the way here, and She welcomed him with a warm smile and an open door.

It seemed that Marcus had made up his mind before he even realized it. As he walked forward and followed the Girl inside her home.

On the bright side, at least he fed himself gluttonously well the day before.


A/N: To all the readers that thought it was Marcus standing outside Bella's house in the last chapter. I never said if he/or/she has gold or red eyes. I just said a "pair of eyes". Marcus was in Seattle the whole time.
Trust me, the last thing I need is to turn Marcus into another Edward Cullen. That whole lover-stalker in the night thing has been done, and overdone in almost every story on fanfiction.

Also, if no one has ever read the leaked Midnight Sun manuscript, it was mentioned that Alice doesn't get a vision of Bella as Edward's soulmate until after the whole van accident. So as far as Edward's knowledge, Bella is just his singer. And since this is a Marcus/Bella story, then the whole soulmate thing is off the table.
And as far as Alice's visions go, the van accident hasn't happened, so she doesn't have that soulmate vision. She just sees (in my story) that Bella will become a vampire.
And there is no ulterior motive for Alice to encourage Edward to give Tanya a chance. She just doesn't want him to be alone. She cares for Edward and wants to see him truly happy with someone. But whither it works out with Tanya or not, that is still to be decided.

I just wanted to make this clear.

Last thing, if you are easily scared DO NOT google search about Jinn. I'm a grown woman and I still get freaked by them!