Story is part of Fage the 13th
Written for: The Darkest Falling Star
Written by: mama4dukes
Summary: Bella Swan is not the only one with a broken heart, there are others like her. When five unlikely friends go on a journey of healing, they discover that something magical can be found even in heartbreak.
Prompt Used: A play on prompt 1—"Summoning a demon on Halloween wasn't the best idea," and prompt 4. "give me something horror."
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author-mama4dukes. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Story is non-canon and AU (alternate universe); Characters are extremely OOC (out of character); Story is definitely over the top and sometimes unrealistic. People, this is comedy so don't take it so seriously.
The Magic of Heartbreak
Monday, October 19th
Forks High School
Lunchtime at Forks High School contained the usual hubbub of student activity. At most tables, students caught up with each other with updates on their weekend activities. Some students were desperately completing homework due in classes following lunch. Others were already planning their next weekend outing by texting each other, even though they were all sitting at the same table. In a quiet, secluded corner of the cafeteria, three girls spoke in soft tones, having a private conversation.
"Did you get the info?" Lauren Mallory asked her friends while waiting in line for lunch.
"We did. Angela and I had to drive to the Hoh Rainforest, park, and then hike. I kid you not! We had to walk for miles to get there, and it wasn't even on the trail! My new flats are covered in mud."
"Why did you wear your flats then? You've lived here all your life. You know it's damp in the rainforest!"
Jessica glared at her friend and snipped, "I wanted to make a good impression. Image is everything, you know."
Lauren rolled her eyes and turned to Angela, completely dismissing Jessica's ridiculous complaints. "What happened? What did you find out? Did she tell you anything? Did she do a reading? Tell me everything about the witch!"
"First of all, she's not a witch; she's a medicine woman."
"Okay, what's the difference?" Lauren asked.
"A medicine woman is a healer and is primarily focused on healing and doing good deeds."
Jessica scoffed at Angela's answer. "She's weird, is what she is! Oh my God! You should have seen her. She was dressed in old clothes—her sweater had patches all over them, and she was wearing worn-out hiking boots underneath her skirt."
"Jess, she lives off the grid in the middle of the forest—the hiking boots are probably for practicality. Besides, we caught her in the middle of gardening," Angela explained. "She was a lovely woman."
"She could have colored her hair. That salt and pepper hair never looks good on anyone."
"Can we get back to business here?" Lauren glanced at the clock. "We only have fifteen minutes left before the bell rings."
"Thank you, Lauren. Anyway, when we got to her cottage, there was someone else there asking her the same thing we were."
"And what did you ask her?"
"I told her we'd all been unlucky in finding love and that we wanted to know if we'd ever meet our one true love."
"I like that! It's more diplomatic than asking if we'll ever find someone who isn't just looking to get laid!" Lauren motioned to Angela to keep going.
"It turned out the other visitor was there for a similar reason, which according to the medicine woman was a fortunate happenstance because for her to do the reading, she needs five people. So, Leah Clearwater is now a part of our group."
"Isn't Leah Clearwater the really hot chick from La Push who is dating Sam Uley? Why does she need help? She already has her man."
Jessica Stanley donned a smug expression on her face before replying, "We asked her, and she said he suddenly broke up with her after they dated for almost four years. Can you believe it? She couldn't even keep her man interested."
"Seriously, Jess. She's probably suffering like I am. It's not fun to be dumped. I thought Tyler and I were in love, but he turned out to be like the rest of the guys and broke up with me as soon as he got what he wanted."
Angela put a sympathetic arm around Lauren and gave her a squeeze of reassurance. The pair hadn't always been friends, but it changed when Angela had given Lauren a ride back to her house after Tyler had broken up with her in the middle of the parking lot of Forks' Outfitters. Angela had lent her a sympathetic ear, and all of Lauren's problems came tumbling out. Since then, they had been inseparable.
"Listen, we need to finish our discussion," Angela stated, glaring at the unfeeling Jessica. She wasn't sure the girl should be part of the reading, considering how selfish she was. "Including Leah Clearwater, there are four of us, but we need a fifth."
"Why five people?"
"She said it was for protection. She was adamant about needing five people for everything to work."
"Well, where are we supposed to get a fifth person?" Lauren asked.
"I happen to know the perfect person."
"Just so you know. I'm against the idea. She's emo and weird," Jessica noted.
"She's not weird, and the last few weeks have been emotional for her, Jessica. She's heartbroken," Angela corrected.
"I don't even know what the big deal about her is anyway. All the guys used to think she was hot when she first got here. Look at her now—sitting outside looking all emo in her hoodie, staring at nothing. She doesn't talk to anyone anymore, she doesn't hang out with anyone, and she's just blah ever since Edward Cullen dumped her."
"You must be talking about Bella Swan," Lauren stated. "She's actually… Actually, she's perfect. She must be devastated about Edward Cullen breaking up with her."
"Do you see what I mean about Bella Swan being the perfect fifth?" Angela smiled and nodded, confirming Lauren's guess. "Plus, she's super nice. She really is. You never really got the chance to know her."
"Well, now I will. Let's ask her after school."
"We'll go to her house."
Unable to come up with an alternate person, Jessica concurred that they should approach Bella Swan. They soon went their separate ways to their classes, agreeing to meet after school so they could reach out to the fifth person.
Jessica refused to go to Bella's house, claiming she had stuff to do, so it was up to Angela and Lauren to persuade her to go. When they pulled into the driveway of the Swan house, they were surprised to see Bella outside wielding a rake, gathering leaves into a pile.
The girls got out of the car and approached her. "Hi, Bella!" Angela chirped.
Bella propped her rake up by the wheelbarrow and turned to the voice. She had heard a car pull into the driveway but thought it was her father coming home early. She was surprised to see Angela Weber standing in front of her with Lauren Mallory by her side.
"Hi. What's up?" Bella asked with a morose expression on her face.
"You already said that," she told Angela.
"Oh, but I haven't greeted you yet. Hello." Lauren waved with a smile on her face.
"Okay, what do you girls want?" She turned to Lauren. "And why are you here? You don't even like me. Come to think of it, you were never friends with Angela either."
"Things changed, Bella."
"It's a pretty big change if you ask me. Now, what do you want? I really have to get some of the raking done. I was supposed to have it done on Friday. I prefer not to piss my dad off even more than he already is."
"Perfect. We'll help!" Angela decided.
"We will?" Lauren asked with a slight whimper. The idea of raking leaves again horrified her. She had spent all of Sunday doing yard clean up with her mother, and her arms, her back, her entire body was protesting.
"Yes, we will. Then we can go inside and talk."
Bella shrugged her shoulders. "Suit yourselves. There are more rakes in the shed." She pointed to the small structure to the side of the house.
Lauren soon came out of the shed. "Bella, you have a leaf blower! Why aren't you using it?"
"Because I don't know how to turn it on—that's why! It's not like we had one in Arizona!"
Lauren shook her head and fired up the leaf blower to the surprise of the two other girls. What most people didn't know about her was that she had spent her entire life in a single-parent household in which her mother and she were the only two doing the home maintenance. Lauren could operate power tools like a boss. It was just something she never really shared with anyone. Most people thought she was a selfish blonde airhead, but the conjecture was from the truth. She had fantastic grades despite being active in cheerleading and having a part-time job. She just never bothered correcting anyone's assumptions. She figured people would think whatever they presupposed about her. It wasn't her problem.
With two additional helpers, the yard work was done in no time. In fact, they finished the entire yard. The girls sat down in the Swan's living room to chat. The window was cracked open to let in the cool breeze. They sat on the floor around the coffee table rather than on the sofa. Bella made some hot cocoa for the girls and thanked them for their help before asking, "So, why the sudden visit?"
"We have this thing we're going to on Saturday, and we're hoping you'll come with us," Angela said.
"What exactly is this thing on Saturday?"
"It involves a psychic of sorts—a medicine woman."
"A medicine woman? Is she Quileute?"
"No. At least I don't think she is. She doesn't live in La Push; she lives in the Hoh Rainforest."
"The Hoh Rainforest? I didn't think people could live there."
"Well, she does," Angela replied. "I've seen her. I've met and spoken to her."
"Why did you go to her?" Bella asked simply.
The conversation wasn't going the way they wanted it to. Bella Swan was very suspicious of their arrival and wasn't going along with their plans without a thorough account of what transpired. Angela sighed and delved into an explanation.
"It all started at the beginning of the school year—around the time the Cullens moved away from the area." She noticed Bella swallow uncomfortably at the mention of the name Cullen. "I found Lauren abandoned in the parking lot of Forks Outfitters with no ride home. Tyler had broken up with her, and she was an absolute mess; she was crying and inconsolable.
Bella nodded. She understood. She had been there, too. When…
"I took her home, and we talked. Tyler had broken up with her in such a cruel way that my mind was blown."
"He was a dick, Bella! We had sex for the first time that weekend, and then he wanted to do it again after school at my house. My mom is pretty strict about having boys over when she's not home, so I said no. He became upset and said that I was just wasting his time if I didn't want to give it to him. Then he… then he…" To Bella's horror, Lauren started crying. Angela immediately put her arm around her friend.
"What… What happened?"
Angela uncharacteristically balled her hand up into fists before speaking through her gritted teeth, "That bastard told her that she wasn't good for him and that he was sorry he let the relationship drag on for so long. He then proceeded to shred her by saying he didn't want her anymore."
"He said those things to you?" Bella questioned Lauren. She was about to lose it completely. The words were nearly identical to the ones Edward spoke to her when he broke up with her—when he ripped her heart to pieces and broke her—completely broke her. She paused to rearrange her thoughts, tampering down on the temptation to join Lauren in crying. It was at that moment, and not a moment sooner that she realized how selfish she'd been. She wasn't the only one suffering from a horrific break-up—others were, too—like Lauren, for example.
In Bella's mind, what Lauren had gone through was worse. She still had to attend school with Tyler, to who she made a mental note to not be friends anymore. At least Edward had the decency to go away and promise never to return. She had to say something. She wanted Lauren to know she wasn't alone in her suffering. She could never divulge that the Cullens are vampires, but she could show Lauren that she empathized with her. No one. No one should be made to cry like Lauren was doing now.
Bella scooted over to Lauren's side and lifted her chin with her fingers so her eyes would have to meet her own. "I know what you're going through," she whispered almost inaudibly. "Ed…Edward said almost those exact same words to me when he broke up with me. And it hurts. It really hurts, but seeing you cry right now made me realize that no one has the right to make anyone feel worthless."
After speaking, Bella realized how true they were. Edward had no right to make her feel small and worthless—as if she had no feelings. He trampled over her like a bug, but she wasn't about to be squashed. She was determined to get over him and to help Lauren get over Tyler, too.
"I'm so sorry." Lauren wiped her tears with her sleeve. "I didn't realize you were going through the same thing as I was. What… What happened between Edward Cullen and you?"
The question put her in a conundrum. She wondered how much she should divulge? The fact was, Edward Cullen and his family were vampires. Yes, she actually dated a vampire. Of course, she couldn't tell anyone because they'd all think she needed to be committed, but it was the truth—the Cullens were vampires. In the end, she decided she couldn't hope for a genuine friendship with them unless she told them everything, leaving out any vampiric facts. Edward and the Cullens were masquerading as humans, and to the people of Forks, they were human, so she would leave it at that.
Bella began her tale with, "You remember how we dated from March through September, right?"
"Of course. You were the 'it' couple. Every couple wanted to be you."
"Well, we dated, and I thought we had a pretty good relationship. I thought we were in love. Edward acted as if I was his forever, but I suppose his idea of forever and mine were different. On September 16th, Edward met me in front of my house after school. If you can recall, the Cullens had been absent from school on the days leading up to it. Anyway, he asked me to walk with him into the woods on the trail leading from our backyard. It was then he proceeded to break up with me. He told me his father got a job offer he couldn't refuse and that the family was moving. In fact, he said they had already moved. He apparently had one last loose end to take care of, which was to break up with me. And then he said almost exactly the same words as Tyler did. He said I wasn't good for him and was sorry he let our relationship go on for so long. Then he said he didn't want me anyway." She inhaled sharply. She left out the part where he told her not to worry, her mind was like a sieve, and time healed all wounds for humans. Jerk! "What right did he have to say those things to me? What right did Tyler have to say those things to you?"
The front door opened abruptly. Charlie Swan turned immediately to the girls and replied, "They didn't. Neither of those little pricks had the right to say such cruel things to you." He looked into his daughter's eyes. "Bella, you never told me exactly what happened. Now I know why you've been so depressed. I wish you would have told me sooner, but I'm glad you were able to open up to your friends."
"Dad? Where were you eavesdropping from? Do you have this house bugged or something?" Bella questioned. She wouldn't be surprised. He was the chief of police, after all.
"Of course not. The window is open. I came home early to help you with the yard, but I see you got it all done." The girls all turned and nodded. "I'm not sorry for eavesdropping. I needed to understand what happened, and now I know."
"And now you know." Bella agreed and stood up to hug him. "I didn't do the yard by myself. Angela and Lauren helped."
"Thank you, girls. How would you like to stay for dinner? We're having pizza tonight."
"Are you sure, Chief Swan?" Angela asked. "I love pizza."
"Absolutely. I don't think Bella has ever had friends over for dinner. This is a nice surprise."
"I just texted my mom to tell her I'm staying for dinner, Chief Swan," Lauren said. "Thanks for having me."
"You girls are welcome anytime."
Dinner went much smoother than Bella expected. Her father recalled memories of going to school with Angela's and Lauren's mothers. Apparently, they had both graduated with him. Angela's father was a few years older.
"I remember your mom had a mean fastball," Charlie told Lauren. "She was a pitcher on the softball team."
"I heard. I still can't believe my mom was a jock."
"She was. Linda used to be on my Little League baseball team when we were in grade school. Come to think of it, I think she played PeeWee Football with me, too." He turned to Angela next. "Your mom was a looker. We all tried asking Bev out to prom, but she shot us all down. She ended up going to the prom with Don Lahote from La Push."
"Is he related to Paul Lahote?" Lauren asked.
"Yes, Don is his father. I go fishing with him from time to time. Do you know Paul?"
"I don't know anyone who doesn't know Paul."
Bella raised her hand. "I don't know who he is."
"He's really hot," Angela supplied.
"So was Don, back in the day. It's probably why your mom went to the prom with him, Angela. He was a good-looking guy and a charmer, still is. He's the captain of the fire station in Forks. We all joke with him and tell him he should be in a calendar."
Bella realized she knew hardly anyone in the Forks and La Push because of all the time she spent with Edward when she should have been getting to know her father and the townspeople. She knew hardly anything about her father and his friends except for Billy Black and Harry Clearwater. She had no idea he played baseball in high school and didn't even know who he went to prom with. Did he even go to the dance? Was he currently dating someone? She made a mental note to get to know her father, starting now to form a stronger relationship with him.
Angela and Lauren left soon after dinner. After walking the girls to Lauren's car, Bella looked up and smiled at her father. "Who did you end up going to prom with, Dad?"
"I went to my junior prom with Connie Black."
"Who is that?"
"She's Billy's sister—Jacob's aunt. You'll meet her one day."
"And who did you go to the senior prom with?"
"Yes, Lauren's mom."
"I've never met her."
"We'll have to fix that, then. You haven't had your hair cut once since you arrived in Forks. Aren't you due for one?"
Bella twirled a few strands of hair between her fingers, recalling how horrified she felt at the sight of herself in the mirror in the morning. "I think you're right, Dad. I really need to get my hair cut."
"I'll call Linda—Lauren's mom—and see if she can take you in one of these days after school. She's a hairdresser."
Her father chuckled. "Welcome back to the living, kiddo."
Bella's eyes widened. Her father had no idea just how ironic that comment was. Had she still been dating Edward, she might have been dead already.