AU rules: vampires and werewolves are Known. Billy is not in a wheelchair. The Cullens who appear have their original surnames (they are also not posing as a family).

There's a moodboard for this chapter is by sortofabetaiguess on tumblr, an absolute sweetie pie.

The original and completed story is on my tumblr musingsofvenus (can find in my writing masterlist or search my tag "to all the monsters") as well!


Chapter 1: the one that got away


"Did you guys have to choose schools that are the furthest from Washington?"

Rachel and Rebecca roll their eyes at Jacob's complaints.

Of course, he'd known about this for months. He had the entire summer to prepare. He even helped his sisters back box after box, suitcase after suitcase. One half was labelled for Hawaii, and the other half was labelled for New York. His sisters were moving to opposite ends of the country while he and his father would stay behind on the rez.

He and his father drove the twins to the airport, three hours away from home, all for a ten minute goodbye.

"One more year and you can choose a faraway school, too," Rebecca says.

"You'll have so much fun in school you won't even miss us," Rachel adds. "We'll be back before you know it!"

"Sure, until one of you meets some guy and runs off with him into the sunset," Jacob snarks.

"Hey! I wouldn't run off with some guy!" Rebecca argues. She taps her chin. "But if you mean a Hawaiian lifeguard…"

"Baywatch has ruined you," Rachel says dryly.

"The Rock has ruined me."

"Oh, so that's why you decided on Hawaii!"

Above them there's an announcement that the 10 am flight to Hawaii will depart from gate 17.

"Alright, bring it in," Billy says roughly, holding his arms out. The rims of his eyes are suspiciously red.

Rachel's lip wobbles. She grabs Rebecca when she continues to stand off to the side, staring at them all hugging with a grimace on her face. Rebecca was never one for hugs, but she would have to make an exception this time.

Even Jacob feels his eyes burning at the thought of his sisters leaving, moving on to bigger and better things without him.

"Facetime me every week," Jacob demands.

"All we have to do is phase to talk to each other, Jake," Rebecca huffs.

"We don't know if it'll work from that distance!"

Rebecca raises her brow in surrender and sighs. "Fine."

The twins bid them a final "see you later" and head toward the security lines. They fist bump each other and step into separate lines that wind in opposite directions.

Billy and Jacob watch until they disappear from sight.

The drive back to La Push is long and quiet. The house is even quieter for the rest of the summer.

When September finally rolls around, the morning Jacob gets ready for his first day of junior year is an odd experience. Neither of his sisters are there to hog the bathroom or fill the quiet morning with the usual sounds of their petty arguments over borrowed clothes.

Still, he can't help but hunch over his plate of peanut butter toast as if his sisters would pop out at any moment and steal a slice. His father sits across from him, covering an amused smile by taking a sip of coffee.

"Got everything you need? Lunch money? Enough gas?"

"Check and check."

Billy nods. "Don't forget to pick up Leah and Seth on your way."

Jacob scoffs. How could he forget? Leah would have his head if he did. That, and she was blowing up his phone since the crack of dawn to make sure he woke up on time. Not to mention the death threats if he made her late to their first day of junior year.

His phone chimes. "Speak of the devil…"

I wanna get dunkin, Leah texts him.

Jacob glances at the time. that adds 10 mins to the drive

OK? and? see you in 5 mr. chauffeur

Jacob sighs, shoveling the last piece of toast in his mouth as he stands. "I'll see you later, Dad."

"What's the rush?"

"Leah."

"Right," Billy laughs. "Well, enjoy your first day!"

"It would probably be nicer if Leah would get her own freakin' car," Jacob grumbles under his breath. He snatches his keys and backpack from the door, heading to the Rabbit parked in the driveway.

The drive to the Clearwater's could hardly be considered five minutes. They live in a white, two story home at the end of the same road Jacob's house is on. A two minute drive would be more accurate.

Leah and Seth are standing on the porch. Seth is eager this morning, a grin spreading on his face when he catches Jacob waving at him through the windshield. He runs down the dirt pathway that leads to the street while Leah walks behind him at a leisurely place.

"Hi, Jake!" Seth shouts as he yanks the backseat door open.

"Hey kid," Jacob responds. He turns his attention to Leah still taking her sweet time down across the lawn. "Are you trying to make us late?"

Leah sticks out her tongue. "You'll just have to drive faster!"

She climbs into the passenger seat and shoves a brown paper bag in his face. "Mom made you a snack."

Jacob takes a whiff. "Snickerdoodles?"

"Mom added extra cinnamon on top of yours," Seth chirps.

"I feel seen," Jacob sighs happily, setting the bag in his lap.

"I feel starved," Leah snarks. She unravels her seatbelt with more force than necessary. "Can we go now?"

Jacob glances in the rearview mirror, catching Seth's gaze. He raises his eyebrows as if asking, What's her problem?

"Hangry," Seth mouths back to him.

Leah flicks Jacob's nose and smirks at his squawk. "Don't have silent conversations about me! Let's go, let's go! I need a doughnut like yesterday!"

Jacob throws the shift into drive. "Yes, your highness."

He pushes the limits of the Rabbit's clutch, but they make it to the school parking lot with several minutes to spare and with a half eaten box of a dozen jelly filled doughnuts.

Leah unbuckles her seatbelt with a smirk smothered in powdered sugar.

"Pleasure doing business with you, as usual."

Jacob wipes the sugar from his own mouth. "Sure, sure."

Leah reaches back and ruffles Seth's hair, ignoring his loud complaints. "Get to school, punk. I'll see you at 3."

"Bye, Lee! Bye, Jake!" Seth chirps, scooting across the seats and jumping out of the car. He's immediately met with high fives and playful nudges from his classmates Collin and Brady.

The driver's door is abruptly yanked open, and Jacob's eardrums threaten to explode when Embry yells a greeting in his ear. On the passenger side, Quil leans through the window and snags a doughnut for himself.

Jacob grasps his poor ear. "Embry, c'mon man," he half-heartedly complains. A grin spreads across his face as he smacks Embry's offered hand.

"Junior year," Embry crows. Quil throws his head back and howls with excitement, laughing around a mouthful.

"Ugh, get me out of here," Leah groans.

"Yes, you need to get your schedule! I'm praying you have physics with me because I am going to fail," Embry says.

"You're gonna have to pay up for my test answers, Call," Leah says. "With interest!"

"She's cruel," Quil whispers over Leah's head.

"I heard that!"

Leah snatches Quil's final bite and shoves it in her mouth. When he shouts with indignation, she ignores him in favor of opening the passenger door to push him aside.

They all walk across the parking lot and up the stairs to the entrance of the school. A range of students greet them with nods and shouts as they pass.

Jacob nearly breaks his neck when he catches the familiar scent of strawberry shampoo. He turns and finds the source standing on a ladder in front of the main hall's bulletin board, struggling to pin a neon pink sign to the wall.

Bella. Isabella Swan.

She and Jacob were childhood friends– but really, acquaintances might be the better word. While their fathers went fishing together, Jacob and Bella would make mudpies in his backyard.

They grew older, and their old rituals faded away, but Jacob has always had a soft spot for Bella.

And by a soft spot, what he really means is: an unrequited crush.

He could never pinpoint one particular thing he liked about Bella. Was it her chocolate brown eyes? Her pretty smile? That endearing clumsiness?

As if he jinxed her, Bella teeters on the ladder.

Jacob rushes forward and steadies her before she could kiss the floor. Bella glances up at him with surprised eyes and red cheeks.

Oh, he definitely liked her blush, too.

"Hey, loca," he breathes. "Still clumsy as ever, I see."

"I'm eternally cursed," Bella jokes.

Jacob helps her down from the ladder, but she still stumbles on the last step. Behind him, Leah stifles a laugh.

Bella's blush spreads.

"S-So how was your summer?" she asks.

Jacob shrugs. "The usual. Garage, beach, cliff diving and more garage."

A secret smile lightens Bella's expression. "The usual," she repeats.

"What about your summer?"

Bella grimaces. "I was in Florida with my mom for the summer. Well, more like mom was with Phil and I was just… there." She shrugs. "She's, you know…"

Unwilling to be a parent? Jacob wants to say.

"Busy?" he suggests instead.

Bella sends him a strained smile and curls her hair behind her ear. "Yeah. Busy," she says lamely. Her gaze falls to her feet. "Every summer."

A pale hand sheathed in a tan leather jacket coils around Bella's shoulders. Bella immediately perks up as she glances behind her, catching a kiss to her cheek.

Jacob and Leah stiffen when golden eyes, full of arrogance, turn to them.

"Hello, Jacob. You're looking shaggy. Shall I call the groomers?"

Edward Masen. Bella's boyfriend. Self-proclaimed vegetarian vampire (whatever that means). Jacob's archenemy.

Jacob scowls, wishing today of all days he didn't forget to bring a hair tie. Edward would use any excuse to harp on him.

Leah beats Jacob to a response, shouldering her way in front of him.

"You mean the shop where you usually go to pick up your next chihuahua happy meal?" she asks in a snide tone.

Edward hisses, raising his shoulders like a distressed cat. "I do not-"

"I think Jacob looks good with his hair down," Bella interrupts, smiling over her shoulder at Edward. "You know you shouldn't say things like that, Edward."

Edward's face pinches. "Sorry," he says insincerely. He looks to Jacob's left and perks up. "Rosalie just walked in. We should say hi."

As he pulls Bella away, she glances back at them with a grimace and mouths 'sorry' before she's whisked away into the crowd.

Leah rolls her eyes after them. "Who told him wearing that much beige in one outfit is acceptable?"

"She likes my hair down," Jacob says stupidly. Maybe he'll forget his hair tie more often.

Leah rolls her eyes even harder.

"She runs with vampires, Jacob," she points out.

That's not enough to deter him. "So?"

"And she's taken."

"I know," Jacob grumbles.

But a guy can dream.