A/N: Hello and welcome to my new story. This is a Bella/Marcus pairing and will revolve around the theme of reincarnation. I hope you like it and thank you for reading.
"I am sure you will never see anything again," she grinned, winking before adding. "I mean- anything like this again, of course."
She grinned wider, somehow her faux pas not seeming like one. It almost felt as if she had said what she truly meant, and that was a scary prospect.
I raised an eyebrow at her, not as fooled as the others surrounding me.
They were all dazzled by her appearance and smile- she did look something out of a magazine, I could admit that, but there was something off about her. Something that gave me the creeps…..Something that reminded me of them…..
I shook my head, internally sighing.
I had not thought about them in nearly five years, my exit from Forks after graduation resulting in their exit from my mind.
I had never been able to put a finger over it, but they had not been normal.
I could state that with guarantee.
They were not like you…me…or even the common person I found when I looked around me.
They were….unfamiliar, a thought that had never sat well with me.
It was strange how I had been the only one able to notice or recognize this. No one else had found them weird. No one else had found their presence discomforting. On the contrary, all the other high school students of Forks High had been jealous of their glamorous looks and more than you need- money. Their dislike had never been for the same reason as mine.
I was not jealous of them. I was confident in my own skin. I did not wish for the supermodel look that Rosalie Hale had going, or the cute and perfect look that Alice Cullen went for. That was simply not me. I preferred to be myself, the way I was.
Anyhow, my dislike and wariness had had nothing to do with their looks or the fact that they believed in showing off their wealth in front of those who could only dream of having such precious belongings- I did not like it, for the record, but that was not why I maintained my distance from them.
No, it was something else.
They were dangerous. I could feel it in my bones when they passed me in the corridors. I could see through the wall of fakeness created around them, surrounding them like a shield. They were living a façade…..a fabricated story, I could somehow see that.
I had tried telling the others about this- warning them that 'they' weren't as innocent as they seemed to be, but had kindly stopped after being termed jealous of their good looks by my so called friends.
You cannot stop a person who is hell- bent on jumping from a cliff. You can try to make them understand. You can even physically attempt to restrain them once or twice, but you cannot remain their watchdog for the rest of their life.
I had tried. I had tried a lot.
In fact, when Charlie- my own father- had got romantically involved with one of 'their' relatives, I had been the first to oppose. Not because I didn't love my father or did not wish for him to be happy. I wanted him to be as happy as could be, but with one look of his future bride; I had known that I would have to keep my distance.
She was not normal. I did not know what it was, but my instincts shouted at me to keep my distance from her.
And so, that is what I had done.
I had stayed with my father for the last two years of High School, even living with his strange wife, Tanya, for a few months, hightailing out of there as soon as I had my diploma in hand.
Charlie had known that I would never return.
He had known that his new wife and I never spoke more than two words to one another.
He had known that I did not approve of his new family, his family acquired from marriage.
I was not being judgmental though.
I was simply following my instincts that refused to relax in their presence, but somehow not even my own father could understand my reluctance in getting to know them.
He had simply jotted it down to me demanding attention and feeling jealous that I was no longer the sole point of focus in my parent's life.
Anyhow, I had not spoken to him in the past five years that I had been out of home.
I don't even know of how he was keeping….of whether he still lived in Forks or had left to live with his wife's family in Alaska…of whether he still worked in the police force or had retired in the years gone by.
I didn't even know if I had any half siblings to speak of.
I didn't know anything about my father's new life.
And, I had no contact with anyone back in Forks, the friends I had made while there, so temporary that I lost contact with them as soon as my bags were packed and I had sat in my old, rusty truck, driving out of that driveway for the very last time. I had not spoken to any of them in years…. and so I had no way of knowing whether Charlie was alright or not.
Of course, I could have gone back to visit him, but a part of me was hurt that he had let go of me this easily.
He had never even tried to stop me…never even asked of the contact address I could be reached on….almost as if he was partly relieved that I was leaving from his home and life.
It was a rude thought, but felt to be the truth.
Anyhow, I shook my head.
This was neither the time nor the place to wonder of these things, I reminded myself.
I had more important matters to focus on.
One of those being, the blonde model that was apparently, my tour guide; she looked nothing like the Cullens, even though she looked exactly like them. She was definitely more dangerous than them- her glowing red eyes a testimony of that as she walked like the evil fox a few steps ahead of us. She was shrewd, nobody could doubt that, but my instincts had her portrayed as much more evil than that one simple word.
I should have not have agreed to this.
I could feel it in my bones.
This was dangerous.
This free tour- open for all- as creepy as could be.
I should just leave.
I could still return to the motel, catching the first flight out of here.
Yes, that seemed to be the correct thing to do.
This place seemed eerie, the whole town in fact.
I had never been here before. In fact, I had never even traveled to Italy before, but I could swear that there was a huge clock tower less than a mile away from here.
I don't know how I knew this. I just knew this.
It was certainly bizarre.
Almost how, I had known the way from my motel to the main piazza of Volterra, not even needing to ask for directions.
My feet had just started to walk, guided by some mysterious force.
I had never felt like this before.
I had never had such strong and particularly displeasing Déjà vu, as I was having in these past few days, ever since I had rented a car to drive from Florence to Volterra, but nevertheless, I was curious to know of how I knew these things.
I was curious to know of why it felt like I had known this small town like I knew the back of my hand. I had never lived here. I had never even visited this place, or seen a movie or read a book set in this small town.
Then how could it feel like home?
Because that is what it felt like- home.
I shuddered at this bizarre thought.
I had no permanent home- not on my own or with either of my parents.
I was a nomad, of sorts.
I worked for one of the travel magazines, my job being to tour the city or town and get the necessary details and photos, more importantly, that would then be used in writing the article.
It surely was a tiring job, but I loved it.
I got to visit new places, eat the local cuisine and travel the world.
What else could I ask for?
Anyway, that was why I was here- in this small town on the map of Italy.
I had been assigned this town as a part of my job, the ancient structures and old look to it a huge attraction for many readers, especially those who liked to mix history and leisure- I was one of those, I could relate.
Anyhow, I had been told, specifically, by one of my colleague's of not to miss this castle, that we were now going to visit.
He had not visited it in person, but he had heard about it, telling me the million and one reasons of why it should not be missed.
I was intrigued. I had to admit that.
Apparently, the castle of the Volturi was owned by these three brothers- almost royalty- who had inherited it down from their ancestors, and they from theirs and so on. The main attraction though, was the fact that the interiors of the castle could remind a person of a world a century ago. They had decorated it so that it mirrored the gone by eras, and I guess that is what attracted the masses that flocked to the castle on weekly basis.
The castle had once a week tours- I had enquired about this.
The reason being that the owners valued their privacy but felt the need to educate the next generation of the culture gone by, or so I had heard from the motel owner.
She had never visited it personally- a stipulation or so being that the residents of this town could not visit the castle, ever.
It was a silly rule, in my opinion.
Though, she had informed me that at the castle gate, the person visiting would have to drop in their passport- in case of foreign national, or an identity proof that declared that they were not a resident of Volterra.
They were really particular about this for some reason.
If you didn't have any of the above, sorry, you couldn't enter the castle.
Obviously, I had my passport with me, and so I had carried it on this day tour.
I wasn't exactly enthusiastic about this rule, but I had accepted it for what it was.
Anyway, how did it even matter to me?
I just wanted to see this castle that was so widely spoken about.
It shouldn't matter to me that a resident of Volterra could never enjoy the same benefits as a tourist.
I shook my head to myself, tightening my grip on my bag- that held my precious camera.
I would need it to take the photos of the castle.
I had read through any possible list of rules, but nowhere was it mentioned that photography was prohibited- a fact that brought a huge smile on my face.
The town looked good- ancient but filled with history, and if that was any indication, I would get amazing photos from this one day tour.
I could not wait.
I sighed audibly. See, this is where my conflict lay. I was excited to visit the castle, but was also wary of the tour guide.
She was creepy, but she was still the tour guide and so I could do nothing other than crib to myself in my mind.
The castle was worth it, I kept reminding myself.
Also, I used to get the same feeling about the Cullens- and while they were strange, they had never harmed another being, from what I knew of.
As was with Tanya, as well….
She was weird, but that did not directly push her into the category of criminal.
It was not a crime to be unusual, you know.
"We are almost there," the tour guide- Heidi, she had called herself, giggled, a bounce in her step.
I did not like this.
Something was wrong.
I could feel it.
I was almost about to turn- and run, when my phone chimed with a message. I quickly pulled it out of my jeans pocket, unlocking and checking through.
'Can't wait to see the photos'
I frowned to myself, the message belonging to Martha- the woman I reported to.
She had known that I would be visiting the castle today- and apparently, was waiting to see the photos.
I could not back out now.
I had to do my job.
We really needed these photos for the article of why a person definitely needed to visit the historical town of Volterra.
It was important- considered one of the main attractions of this place.
I could not go back without capturing the best of this town.
Mainly, I did not want to listen to Martha's comment of how I had let go of a brilliant opportunity.
So what if the tour guide was creepy and could easily cause goose bumps on my skin?
I was simply going to ignore all of this and do my job.
She could not be a serial killer.
It was broad daylight out!
I shrugged to myself, looking around me.
It seemed familiar- once again.
Almost as if I had walked down these roads earlier…
It was not possible, I know, but it surely felt like that.
I recognized these roads. I recognized this town.
A part of me wondered if I would even recognize the Castle….
It was eerie.
I sighed heavily. I was being ridiculous.
I was probably just imagining the huge déjà vu I had going. It was most probably a side effect of my overly active mind.
I had loved writing short stories in my teenage days- this probably being some weird reaction to that.
I was just making up a story in my mind, believing that I had seen these places before, when I really hadn't.
Yup, that was it.
"Here we are," Heidi clapped her hands in excitement. "Welcome to the Castle of Volterra. Please proceed towards our counter to deposit your identity proof and for the security check. We will soon be inside the Castle. Remember the interiors are still designed like they were three millennia ago, with only a few minor changes made here and there. Our tour will end with a meet and greet with the three brothers themselves."
Saying so, she walked towards one of her collogues, a man with cropped blonde hair and a sneer on his face, whispering to him something in his ear.
I looked at her for a few brief minutes, shaking my head and proceeding towards the security check.
We were thirty six of us in the tour- at the beginning, but by the time the security check ended, we were down by five.
I could hear an argument going on. Apparently, one of the locals had decided to sneak in, now arguing with the strange employee about this bizarre rule.
I shook my head, sighing, following the others towards the main gate.
I looked at the castle once.
It was magnificent, and similarly huge, close to a hundred acres- here and there. It was five storeys tall, the exteriors built in the form of several small cottages attached to one big mansion. Several small windows littered the stone creation, antiqueness evident in the air.
This castle had been around for millennia- and that fact was not lost on anyone around.
It was beautiful, indeed.
But, I still could not shake the feeling that I had been here before.
I had walked through this door before. I had walked inside the decorated corridors that passed through this castle.
I had lived here.
This was home.
I shook my head harshly.
I was being ridiculous.
I had never even set foot in Italy before this one week….forget calling Volterra home.
It was probably just a really big déjà vu that I was experiencing.
This probably just reminded me of something else that I had seen years back.
Renee had liked to travel- these old, abandoned Castles her very favorite.
Yes, it had to be that.
"Ready to go in," Heidi winked, her red eyes shining with joy.
A group of young teenagers jumped up and down in joy, agreeing with her instantly.
I was not so sure, or as excited as them.
But, I let it go, pushing my fear aside.
I had a job to do- and I was going to do it.
I took a deep breath in, taking a step ahead.
Here goes nothing…..