Chapter 1

Graduation

The sky turned black with graduation caps being thrown up in enthusiasm. I was extremely happy even though it had started sprinkling. I had Edward right at my side and he was here to stay, forever. I was also officially out of High School. I managed to catch up and pass with the mishap that happened during my spring break. I winced at the memory.

"So, how does it feel to be a graduate?" Edward whispered into my ear, making me light headed.

"Pretty good I guess. I would ask you the same thing, but I'm sure you are tired of graduating by now." I responded, trying to catch my breath and steady myself on his arm.

"Hmm. I guess. But this time I am with you." He smiled my favorite crooked smile and gave me a tight squeeze around my waist. We walked over to where Charlie and Renee were. Phil couldn't be here because he had a baseball game.

"Oh Bella!" My mom said rushing towards me blotting away her tears with a tissue. "I am so proud of you!" She gave me a loving hug.

"Thanks Mom." I said, hugging her back.

"Well Bells I guess this means you're all grown up now. Congrats honey." Charlie never was the best with words but I understood what he meant, and I appreciated it. Even though I've graduated Charlie still keeps a look out on Edward. He doesn't approve of him completely, yet.

The next morning I awoke with a start. I had had the strangest dream. I was in a forest and suddenly the Cullen's appeared at my left side, then Jacob and the other Quileute boys were at my right. Edward was holding my left hand and Jacob was holding my right hand. They both seemed angry and resistant. Edward and Jacob each had their eyes staring straight ahead towards the never ending forest, deep in thought. They each squeezed the hand that they were holding tightly as if neither of them ever wanted to let go.

I decided to ignore the dream; I know that they would never fight each other. Then I remembered what Carlisle had promised me the day we voted for my mortality. He promised he would do it after graduation. When I got up I found a note folded neatly on my rocking chair,

"Be back later, I had to go hunting with Emmett. Be safe. I love you."

He always had the neatest hand writing, he did look thirsty and they always like to hunt together. I went and took a shower, brushed my teeth and got dressed as fast as possible, of course stumbling around a bit while putting my pants on. Charlie was out on his usual fishing trip and wasn't home so I skipped breakfast and went straight to my truck.

I didn't even bother knocking on the door. Esme was at the foot of the staircase walking towards me as I walked in. She most likely heard me coming.

"Hi Bella," Esme said with a smile on her radiant face, "what brings you here?"

"Hi Esme, is Carlisle home today?"

"Yes, he is up in his study. Is Edward out hunting? Usually he is with you."

"Ya he is out with Emmett. Thank you Esme."

I ran up their grand staircase as fast as my human legs would carry me, being careful not to fall over and cause another problem like my birthday last year. I shuddered, a memory I am happy to suppress.

I tapped lightly on the door to Carlisle's study. Not sure if I was being intrusive or not.

"Come on in Bella." Carlisle called out. It does not surprise me anymore when one of the Cullen's would know it's me with out me saying anything. Vampires had an amazing sense of smell and hearing.

"Hi Carlisle, I hope I am not bothering you. I just had a question to ask you."

"No, no. You're not. Have a seat." He smiled motioning to the chair that sat in front of the elaborate desk.

I started to blush and I felt a little hesitant to ask him my question, "You probably already know what it's all about; you made a promise a couple of months ago. I was wondering if you are going to keep it or not."

"Yes I remember the promise I made. I will always keep to my word, that is if you still—"

I cut him off, "YES OF COURSE I STILL WANT TO!" I clasped my hands over my mouth, blushing even more now "I'm sorry I didn't mean to be rude."

Carlisle let out a chuckle, "Its okay Bella. Does Edward know you are here?"

Dang it, he just had to ask that. "No."

"Well I don't think Edward would be too pleased if he came back and saw you suffering because of the pain."

I frowned. "I guess not, but what if you change your mind?"

"I promise I won't." Carlisle said. I could hear the compassion in his voice and he looked like he meant it.

"Okay then. I will wait until Edward gets here then you can change me."

I walked out of his study and closed the door behind me. I didn't feel like going back to my vacant house so I decided to wander around the ancient white house. I went to Edward's room and sat on his couch. It smelled just like him. Like how his jacket smelled each time he gave it to me. It was strange being alone in this house with out Edward with me. Jasper probably went hunting with Emmett and Edward, and Alice and Rosalie were most likely out shopping.

"I'll be outside if you need me Esme." She wasn't anywhere around me but I knew she would hear me.

It was not raining and I was happy about that but the sky was turning dark so a storm was coming. I wandered down by the stream; the grass was tall and swaying in the breeze. I walked around with my arms held out, lightly stroking the grass as I walked. The breeze had a sweet smell, almost like Edwards, but not exactly. It was always so gorgeous here, so peaceful, as if nothing could ever go wrong again.

"Bella." Edward's gentle voice came from behind me, sounding relieved. He lightly walked towards me and wrapped his arm around my waist. Taking his other hand he placed it gently on my cheek and traced my jaw line with his finger down to my chin. He bent down to kiss me on the lips. I tried to behave myself but my hands reached for his face and I kissed him more passionately. I was surprised when he kissed me back, harder. His sweet breath making my head spin and my heart started to beat faster as he opened his mouth to kiss me more. Then he pulled away.

"Humph," I made a puppy face, "is something wrong?"

"No. now that I know you are safe."

"Why wouldn't I be? Nothing here can hurt me." I smiled at that thought. Everything was just flawless.

He looked hesitant to respond. Then his facial expression became angry and his jaw tensed. "Victoria is back." He said this through clenched teeth so quietly that I almost did not hear.

I remained somewhat calm, but still, I was scared. "Well I am sure she will leave, like last time, once she knows you are here to stay, forever." I tried to sound reassuring but my voice cracked in the middle of my sentence.

His expression didn't change. "No, not this time Bella. There are others with her. Emmett and I smelled her scent while we were hunting. There were different scents all mixed with hers." His eyes became angry. My face turned into shear horror. The thought of Edward fighting her, even going near her, and she now has help.

Edward embraced me in a protective but reassuring hug. What are we going to do?