Disclaimer: Twilight belongs to Stephanie Meyer. As does Midnight Sun which is officially my favourite book in her series.
A/N: I don't really have a lot to say about this, but the idea's been nagging at me for a while since I've read Midnight Sun. This is my first Twilight fanfic so bear that in mind, I suppose. But, I've been experimenting with writing for fandoms outside of Harry Potter lately and I need to get this idea out somewhere. I promise I won't abandon my other fics for this one. :)
Chapter 1: Something Impossible
My feet flew across the forest floor, stride lengthening with every step, trees flashing by in perfect detail. Even under the shadow of night, I could see each splinter of wood quiver against the trunks, each pine needle glisten a shimmering green, accentuated by the silvery moonlight filtering down through the canopy of criss-crossing branches overhead.
Though the dead leaves crunched softly beneath my shoes, I knew that I could manage lighter steps had my soles not been constrained by the leather. I considered pausing to relieve them of their duties of covering my feet, but I could hear Bella not far off behind me and the childish part of me - an immaturity I could never outgrow - could not allow her to beat me. In near all pursuits in my immortal life, particularly when Bella was concerned, I acted the gentleman. But these social niceties were abandoned when it came to running.
I drew in another breath through my nose, taking in the musky, dog-like scent. Sure of the direction, I continued on my path, hearing Bella and Renesmee sprinting to catch up behind me. I smiled as I recalled Renesmee's trepidation when she first caught the scent of the wolf. She had worried that it was in fact Jacob lurking about, as was his wont when it came to my daughter. Still, he had promised he would give us our space tonight, rekindle the bonds of our immediate, for lack of a better word, "blood" family since their wedding a few years previous, and subsequent newly wed phase. I had listened for Jacob's, by now quite familiar voice, but his thoughts did not reach my second hearing.
I had assured her that it wasn't Jacob. Though her thoughts were still skeptical, she trusted me enough to follow me and her mother on the hunt.
She needn't have worried. She had lived most of her life in Forks, Washington where the wolves that resided there could not be hunted, whether they be endangered or a Quileute. Now that we were living in Alaska for a little while, it was perfectly acceptable to slay the stray wolf, something that I wouldn't mind doing after hearing some of Jacob's thoughts lately.
I kept on course, and the scent was stronger now. I could practically taste the thick, musky blood, feel the coarse fur, hear the animal's pants and yelps. I stopped, skidding a little as I saw the creature turned from me, back arched and breathing heavily. I hesitated. Something was wrong here. I had expected a pack of them, yet this one was all alone. And it didn't look right at all.
Its breaths were erratic and heavy, its shoulders were rolling, head jerking, fur spiked up in tufts. It turned about and its eyes were glinting with pure bloodlust. Its thoughts were disjointed, overcharged, feral. It wanted to kill me, but it didn't know why. It was intelligent, but primal. Wordless and simple though they were, it had thoughts. I started to back away, lowering my eyes in a non-threatening way and being careful not to bare my teeth. I was starting to think I knew what this creature was and I was not thirsty enough to gamble my life against it.
Bella and Renesmee came up behind me. I saw Bella's lip curl back and moonlight glinted off her teeth. The full moon. How could I have missed the signs? I grasped Bella's wrist, warning her off with a swift jerk of my head, still studying the ground in submission. She faltered, but she trusted me and so copied my posture. Renesmee didn't notice this silent exchange. She didn't encounter true wolves enough to know that this was not one. Her thoughts were intent on the hunt. She was thirsty and prey was right here, right here in front of her and all alone. We weren't claiming it, Bella and I, and she wasn't about to hesitate now that the prize she had been craving was presented to her.
"Renesmee!" I hissed but clamped my lips together as the werewolf's eyes darted to mine. It snarled. Renesmee snarled back. And then she lunged.
Renesmee lunged for the peculiar wolf. She was fully immersed in the hunt, unable to be subdued. I didn't understand why this was a problem, but I knew enough to know that if Edward was nervous, there was good reason. Our wayward daughter, however, did not always take our word as law. I should have expected that would get her into trouble.
Renesmee and the wolf collided in midair and then fell back. Renesmee startled, not expecting to be thwarted. I felt my breath stop. It was strong. Quicker than I could ever hope to move, Edward launched himself away from me and knocked the wolf back. The creature made a noise that was somewhere between a yelp, a growl, and a howl as Edward's stone body smashed into it and pinned it to the ground. The wolf whipped its head about, thrashing its legs. Its jaws snapped once, twice, yellowed teeth gnashing together and then it gained purchase on Edward's forearm.
Edward, whom had been intent on draining the creature of blood, now let go in shock. His steel-like vampire skin had been chewed right through and I thought for sure I had seen bone. I pushed past Renesmee, grasping the wolf from behind and inserting my teeth into the marks Edward had made. I didn't release the writhing creature until the last of its blood had been drained and its heart stuttered one final time. I pulled the limp animal off of Edward and he stood, examining his gnawed arm. It looked as though he had gotten between a newborn vampire and their prey.
"Does that hurt?" I asked in concern.
"Just a little," he assured me, dropping his arm. "It will heal eventually. Besides, I'd say it's a rather fine injury considering we've just gone toe to toe with a werewolf."
I raised my eyebrows, turning about and looking back at the dead creature. "A werewolf?"
"Like Jake?" Renesmee asked, horrified.
"No," Edward said. "The Quileutes are shape-shifters that call themselves werewolves. True werewolves only turn on nights like this." He nodded at the moon.
"The Children of the Moon..." I said, comprehension dawning as I recalled Caius's horror-struck voice as he spat out that phrase years ago. I had known werewolves, real werewolves, existed in this world. I had known vampires like Caius scorned them and hunted them to near extinction. I had not known that these true werewolves were in North America. I shuddered in violation, realizing we were not as safe as I had thought.
Sensing my fears, Edward squeezed my hand. "They must not have felt safe in Europe any longer, with the Volturi breathing down their necks. I doubt there's much more here though. They don't move in packs."
"Will you be alright?" Renesmee asked, glancing worriedly at his arm. "I'm sorry I didn't listen."
"It's perfectly alright," Edward smiled. "These things heal. You've seen Jasper's scars from the newborns. And you've been thirsty for a while." Edward winced. "You're still thirsty. When was the last time you've hunted?"
Renesmee looked down, refusing to speak, but her thoughts must have betrayed her for Edward let out a hiss. "It makes Jake uncomfortable," Renesmee murmured. "He wouldn't say anything but it just didn't seem right. We haven't been married all that long."
"You shouldn't hide who you are from him," I said sadly.
"Especially from him," Edward agreed. "You need to satiate your vampire side if you want to be safe around humans. We'll find something else."
"Maybe we should go to Carlisle first," Renesmee said uncertainly.
"How many times do I have to say I'm fine?" Edward said, exasperated. "Let's hunt now, and go to Carlisle after."
"Alright," Renesmee said, her thirst no doubt betraying her as she darted into the woods. Edward and I started after her, but Edward stopped after a few steps, looking down at his ravaged arm.
"Edward?" I asked, worry evident in my tone.
"I'm fine," he said again. But, even as he defended his good condition, his eyes rolled up into his head and he collapsed, shaking violently amidst the thick tree roots and dried out leaves.