Author's Note: I do not own the characters nor am I pretending to be Stephenie Meyer. I am merely a fan who wanted to tell how I believed the story would go. ) Please enjoy! I'm sorry it took so long. I will probably update within the week. Thank you to all who favorited and reviewed! -J.A.
I woke up in Edward's arms but I did not feel his ice cold skin against my own. I opened my eyes to see his face and was immediately met by his beautiful topaz eyes. I smiled as the pain subsided. I no longer felt the fire in my veins. That must mean I was finally a vampire. I put my hand on Edward's cheek and pulled his face to mine. We kissed for a few minutes not coming up for air. Edward no longer needed to be gentle with me, and he didn't need to use control. This was our first kiss as a vampire couple, and it was amazing. Full of passion and love and desire. After a few minutes I pulled away. I looked at Edward with a look of incredulity. His skin no longer felt cool to my touch, instead he now felt warm and human.
"What's wrong?" He asked, his velvet voice full of concern and fear.
"Your skin!" I replied, my voice full of shock.
"What?" Edward asked confused. "What's wrong with my skin?"
"Nothing," I answered quickly. I didn't want him to think anything was wrong with him. It was everything but! "You're not cold anymore. You're warm!"
He laughed and smiled his crooked smile. My breath caught in my chest. Glad to know he still had that effect on me. I raised my eyebrow at him.
"No, I'm not." He continued
to smile at me. "Well, not to you anymore, at least."
I gave him a confused look. This wasn't making any sense. Why was he not cold to my touch? He could tell I wasn't following so he continued.
"You're a vampire now. Nothing you touch will be cold to you. You'll feel warm things, as I felt the warmth of your skin, but you will never be cold."
I took it all in. Never be cold again? That sounded pretty awesome to me! And now I would be able to hold Edward and not shiver. This was starting to sound even more amazing than I could have ever believed. I threw my arms around him and hugged him. Our life together started now.
"Can I go see the others?" I begged him. I wanted to see Alice, Carlisle, Esme, Emmett, Jasper, and even Rosalie. I wanted them to see me as a vampire. Edward smiled at me before he answered.
"Of course. Hold on a second, though." He leaned in to kiss me. I kissed him back, throwing my whole self into the kiss. I looped my arms around his neck, and slid my hands into his hair. I kneeled on the bed as he slid his arms around my waist and pulled my body closer to his. I was shocked at how normal he felt as I pressed my body against his. I felt his mouth open and his tongue slide across my lower lip, I shivered, not because it was cold but because it felt amazing. I opened my mouth and our tongues met, deepening the kiss. He tasted positively delicious! After a few moments he pulled away and rested his forehead against mine.
"All right," he said a little breathless. "Let's go."
I grabbed his hand and began to
pull him towards the door. I was surprised at how easy it was to pull
him with me. Must be my newly acquired vampire strength. I smiled and
skipped out of his bedroom and down the hall without tripping. This
was going to be awesome! I made it down the stairs in blur and
stopped dead in the entrance of the Cullens' home. I gasped. I hadn't
realized how fast I was! I could keep up with Edward's pace without
breaking a sweat.
"Wow!" I squealed. "This is going to take some getting used to!" Edward threw his head back and laughed loudly. I started to laugh with him. It was kind of funny.
Suddenly I heard someone come up behind us. I turned around to see who it was and found Alice and Jasper hand in hand grinning at us in the entry of the kitchen.
"What's so funny?" Jasper asked curious as to why Edward and I couldn't control our laughter. Alice's face opened into a little "o" of surprise.
"Bella! Wow! You look amazing!"
I looked at her in surprise before looking quickly to my body. I hadn't thought of looking at myself in a mirror before seeing everyone. I had no idea what I looked like. I hoped I was as beautiful as them. I studied my body. I was still wearing my old faded jeans and black t-shirt I had on the night Edward changed me but it fit better than it had before. My arms were toned with muscle that I hadn't had before and my skin was pallid. I assumed my eyes were a bright crimson red, but I couldn't be sure without looking in a mirror. I ran up to Alice and threw my arms around her and hugged her tightly. She hugged me back and then held me at arms length to look at me.
"Wow" she muttered silently, but I could hear her now.
I smiled as she grabbed my hand and tugged me towards the kitchen where I believed the rest of the Cullen family was. We walked in together – Alice actually bounced in, I was the one walking, with Edward and Jasper trailing along behind us. I smiled as I saw Edward's family, my family, all sitting at the table talking. As I walked in Emmett bounded out of his chair and caught me in one of his bear hugs, squeezing me so tight I thought I might explode.
"Bella's so hot now!" Emmett boomed. "Edward, why did you wait so long to change her?" I giggled at the irony of Emmett's statement as Edward punched Emmett in the shoulder, sending him flying onto the floor next to the table. This time I could see the fast punch that sent his brother flying. I laughed harder. Rosalie glanced at me before glaring at Emmett. I couldn't stop laughing and suddenly I felt Jasper calming me down. I looked over my shoulder and smiled at him and which he returned. Edward put his arm around my waist and we stepped closer to the table. Esme got up from her chair and glided towards me, embracing me softly before kissing me on the forehead with a soft "Congratulations". Carlisle followed suit, coming up and giving me a hug, and clapping Edward on the shoulder as men often did. I smiled. I saw Rosalie shift uncomfortably in her chair before hesitantly getting up and kissing my cheek. We all sat around the table for hours just talking and laughing and having a great time, I even noticed Rosalie joining in and laughing, when I noticed a dull ache in the back of my throat. I didn't know why it was there but I hoped it wasn't an after-effect of my change.
"Edward," I whispered into his ear. He gave a small "Hmm?" of acknowledgement so I continued. "The back of my throat feels funny."
He smiled his crooked smile and chuckled.
"That is because you are thirsty." He kissed my forehead. "Shall we go hunting?"
"Yes," I replied. My first hunting trip. This was going to be an experience I wasn't likely to forget. It could go wrong in so many ways for me. What if I couldn't catch any game? I could be running and smash into a tree! It was a legitimate concern in my mind. I may be a vampire now, but that didn't mean my criminal clumsiness just disappeared. No, for all I knew it was hiding in the wings waiting to overcome me at the worst possible moment. My silent musings were interrupted by Alice.
"I wanna come!" Alice's shrill voice pierced through my reverie. "Oh, please Bella, may I come?" She begged.
"Of course!" I replied excitedly. I did want Alice to come with me.
"Would you mind if we all came?" Carlisle asked me. I knew if I said I didn't want them to come with me, he would respect my wishes. But I truly did want them all to come. I wanted to spend the day hunting with my family. I saw Edward look at me questioningly out of the corner of my eye and I gave him a smile.
"The more the merrier." Edward answered for me as he correctly judged my reaction.
I started to plan it all out, my thoughts spilling out of my mouth like a can of paint that had been tipped over. We would need hiking gear, possibly tents, depending on how long we would stay. How would we catch the animals? Probably with traps. I'd heard of people using them before, but I didn't know how to set them up. Or guns, though I had no idea how to use one.. Good thing everyone is immortal. That could prove to be highly dangerous. Whose car would we take? Probably Emmett's jeep. Not all of us would fit in it, and that might present a problem.
"So, you have the gear in the garage, I assume, right?" I started to ramble off what I assumed we would need on a hiking trip. "We'll probably need guns and traps to get the animals and..." I trailed off when I saw the looks of hilarity across their faces. What was so funny? Emmett burst out laughing and Jasper laughed with him. I heard Edward stifle a laugh beside me. He did his best to control his voice as he stopped me from continuing.
"Bella, we don't need anything." Edward told me in a quiet voice which I knew he was using because if he spoke louder he would break into laughter. "We have everything we need on us." He flashed his sharp teeth at me.
"Well, yes," I told him. "But we'll need to drive there and Emmett's jeep isn't big enough for us all."
I heard Jasper laugh and mutter something that sounded a lot like "This should be fun" to Emmett to which he replied "Oh, I've gotta see this". I shot a glare in their direction.
"Bella, love," I whipped my head back at the sound of Edward's voice. "We run."
"Oh." Was all I could manage. Now that he said that it made sense. Of course they would run. It was much faster. If I could still blush, I would have. I felt Edward's hands as he cupped my face. He kissed me gently before asking me if I was ready to head out. I nodded and we ran out the backdoor into the beautiful sunny day.
We finally reached a forest that was overpopulated with mountain lions when Edward and I slowed to a walk. Edward and I had run hand in hand the whole way here and I was reluctant to let his hand go. Now that we were finally here I was overcome with nervousness. I didn't know how to hunt, and I didn't know my own strength. I looked around me at the moss-covered trees that surrounded us. It was beautiful here. The sun shone through some of the trees and lit up the forest floor. It was covered in pine needles and pine cones, leaves and bushes and ferns. There was a slight breeze in the forest that rustled the branches of the evergreen trees that encompassed us. Alice and Rosalie had gone off together to hunt and Esme had gone with Carlisle. Emmett and Jasper stood together ten feet away from where I stood next to Edward, no doubt making bets about how I would fair on my first hunt.
My nose tingled with the scent of the wildlife that was around me. I could smell birds, rabbits, and deer, though they were a less potent smell than the scent of the lions and bears that were in the forest. I felt the ache in my throat deepen until it felt like a burning fire. Not a painful sensation but one of discomfort. Edward's hand left mine and I heard him whisper in my ear.
"Let your instincts take control." I nodded and closed my eyes, willing my instincts to do the work.
I caught the scent of a mountain lion in the breeze. My eyes snapped open and my body ran on instinct towards the scent. When I was twenty feet away from the animal, I stopped. I watched the lion as it stalked it's prey. It was hunting, just as I. I felt myself lower into a crouch. I heard a low growl in the air. It took me a few seconds to realize that the growl had come from me. I stalked the lion, coming from behind and sprang onto its back. I grabbed it around the neck with my hands and sank my razor sharp teeth into its neck.
Warm blood flowed into my mouth and seeped down my throat to relieve the burning ache in my throat. I drank greedily from the lion though I didn't particulary like the taste of the blood I was drinking. My instincts only fueled how fast I drank.
I finally finished with the lion and stood up, wiping the blood from my lips. I looked around me and then at the lion I had just killed. Three days ago I would have been filled with such remorse that I would have collapsed onto the forest floor in tears over the fact that I had just killed and drank the blood of one of God's creatures, but it did not hit me as hard as I had thought it would. I did feel terrible about it but I knew I could not survive without it.
I replayed the events of the morning in my head as I ran with Bella to the forest where she would have her first hunt. I had been laying with my cheek against Bella's chest, listening to the sound of her heartbeat. It had slowed significantly until it no longer beat. I listened as her heart gave one last feeble beat. I knew that if I could cry, I would have. My favorite rhythm had just ended, and I was melancholy. The heavenly scent of Bella's blood had been replaced by a scent that was just as enchanting. As I breathed it in, savoring it, Bella had opened her eyes from her unconcious slumber and I had been in shock. Though I had known her pulchritudinous brown eyes would be replaced by a crimson red, it had surprised me. I don't think I really believed they would change. Bella put her hand on my face and we had kissed. It was our first real kiss, and I had been blown away. It had ended too soon. Bella had been astonished to feel that my skin no longer cooled her. I had laughed at that, for it did not surprise me. I explained to her that nothing would ever feel cold to her, though she would still feel warmth, as I had felt the warmth of her skin. She seemed to like that idea. She had thrown her arms around me in a hug before asking to see our family.
We had spent a few moments locked in a passionate kiss before we descended the stairs together to see everyone. Bella had come to an abrupt halt at the bottom of the staircase. She hadn't realized how fast she was until then. She gasped.
"Wow!" She had squealed. "This is going to take some getting used to!"
I threw my head back and laughed and Bella joined me as Alice and Jasper came up behind us. Jasper was curious as to what was so funny, but Alice was stunned as she looked at Bella.
I saw Alice's face opened into a little "o" of surprise.
"Bella! Wow! You look amazing!" Alice exclaimed.
Bella quickly looked down to see what Alice was talking about. I looked too. Bella no longer looked helpless and fragile, but strong and defined. Her arms were now toned with muscle, and her face had more definintion to it. I had thought Bella was the most beautiful woman before but nothing could compare to how entrancing she was to my eyes now. She took my breath away. Before I could say so Alice grabbed Bella and they walked into the kitchen together with Jasper and I following behind. The instant we entered, Emmett had bounded from his chair and enfolded Bella in a bear hug. He finally set her down and looked her up and down.
"Bella's so hot now!" He boomed before turning to speak to me. "Edward, why did you wait so long to change her?"
Bella giggled. I couldn't believe he said that. I punched him and he flew backwards onto the floor behind Rosalie's chair, to which Bella laughed harder.
I know where to find you, I heard Emmett think menacingly. I'll get you back.
Jasper had had to calm her down. Esme had been the first to offer her congratulations, Carlisle followed after his wife, and Rosalie was last. I was surprised by Rosalie. I hadn't expected her to acknowledge Bella, but she had. She had gotten up from her chair, a bit hesitantly, and walked over to kiss Bella's cheek. Bella had been surprised at that, but I knew she was elated by it.
She's family now, Rosalie thoughts said. I may as well try and make her feel welcome.
We had sat at the table for a few hours, talking and laughing together – Rosalie had joined in, and I was glad to see that she was coming around, when Bella whispered in my ear.
"Edward," she had whispered. I gave small "Hmm?" for her to know I was listening. "The back of my throat feels funny."
I smiled and gave a chuckle.
"That is because you are thirsty." I kissed her forehead. "Shall we go hunting?"
"Yes," Bella replied and her face was thoughtful.
"I wanna come!" Alice's shrill voice pierced through Bella's thoughts. "Oh, please Bella, may I come?" She begged.
"Of course!" Bella responded
I was happy that Bella wanted company on her first hunting trip. I had expected her to avoid hunting for a week or two. I didn't know how she would feel about it. Carlisle asked if the rest of the family could join and I shot Bella a questioning look. She smiled, and I took that as a yes.
"The more the merrier." I had answered for her.
Bella had gotten a contemplative look on her face. I wanted to know what she was thinking about, but I could not read her thoughts. I had never been able read her mind. It drove me crazy when she was silent and did not tell me what she was thinking or feeling. Suddenly Bella began to ramble on about what we would need for our hunting trip. Guns, traps, and tents, she gushed. Emmett and Jasper burst out laughing and I had to hurriedly stifle a laugh that threatened to escape my throat.
Guns, traps, and tents, oh my! Jasper thought.
Jasper's thought only made it harder for me to remain serious. She looked at me with a puzzled look on her face.
"Bella, we don't need anything." I told her in a quiet voice. If I spoke any louder I would break into laughter. "We have everything we need on us." I flashed her my teeth.
"Well, yes," She spoke to me slowly as if speaking to a child. "But we'll need to drive there and Emmett's jeep isn't big enough for us all."
I heard Jasper laugh and mutter "This should be fun" to Emmett, to which he replied "Oh, I've gotta see this".
Bella thinks we need guns, traps, and a car to hunt! I caught Emmett's thoughts. She'll surely be the one eaten by a bear, not the other way around.
Bella shot a glare in their direction.
"Bella, love," She whipped her head back to face me at the sound of my voice. "We run."
"Oh." Bella breathed. I gently cupped her face and kissed her gently before asking if she was ready to head out. She nodded and we ran out the backdoor into the beautiful sunny day.
Bella and I slowed to a walk as we reached the middle of the forest. Alice and Rosalie went off together, heading towards the East, while Esme and Carlisle went South. Bella took in her surroundings but I kept my eyes on her. I watched as her face registered the trees, the sunlight and the bushes. I could tell she was nervous. Jasper and Emmett were behind us making bets.
I bet she'll trip over whatever animal she's hunting. Emmett thought.
I let go of Bella's hand and whispered in her ear. "Let your instincts take control."
She nodded and I watched as she closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Suddenly she caught the scent of a mountain lion. Her eyes snapped open and she set off running in the direction of the lion. I followed behind her to see how she would react. I stayed a good distance behind her so that she wouldn't know I was there. I was curious to see how she hunted. I hid behind a tree fifteen yards away from her as she skidded to a halt twenty feet away from her prey. It was also stalking its prey so it didn't notice Bella come up behind it. She lowered herself into a feral crouch. A low growl escaped from her chest and she was startled when she realized it had come from her. I swelled with pride as I watched her slowly circle around the lion. She was quite positively frightening as she sprang onto the back of her prey. She snatched it around the neck with her hands and sank her teeth into the neck of the mountain lion. Bella lowered herself and her prey onto the ground and she began to drink from the animal. A look fluttered across her face that I had never seen before, but it quickly went away as she continued her feast. She stood up and wiped the blood from her lips. She had a peculiar look on her face. I was at her side in an instant.
"Bella," I said her name. She
jumped a little at the sound of my voice but relaxed immediately. She
turned around and wrapped her arms around me. I held her to my chest.
"You were impressive."
She sighed against my chest. I lifted her face with my forefinger so I could look into her eyes.
"What's wrong?" I asked.
"Nothing. I guess I just think I should feel worse about this." She motioned to the mountain lion behind her. I nodded, I understood what she meant. I knew that she felt sadness for what she had done, but she did not feel such strong remorse that she could not do what she needed to to survive. I didn't think there were any words I could tell her to ease her confusion so I just kissed her forehead and walked her away from the lifeless animal that was lying motionless on the ground.
We walked in silence for a while before Bella asked me if I had caught anything yet. I told her I had not, and she insisted that I hunt now. I listened to her advice and let my instincts take over now that I knew Bella was in no danger from seeing me let go.
It was night-time at the Cullen house and we were all hanging out in the family room watching TV and joking around when Bella turned to me.
"Emmett, I believe I challenged
you to an arm wrestling match before I was changed." Bella
"Yeah," I said. "What about it?"
Bella just smiled and said, "Want to?"
I didn't know what to say. On one hand, I wanted to see if I could beat Bella's newborn strength, but on the other I knew that she would win. Did I really want this to go on my permanent record? If Bella beat me no one would let me forget it. They'd forever throw it in my face that a girl had beaten me at arm wrestling, and in our family, forever wasn't just a saying. It was literal. I shook my head. I couldn't wrestle her. It would make me look weak if I lost, and I couldn't take that chance.
"Oh, come on, Emmett!" Bella begged me. "It'll be fun!" I snorted. Fun for who? Not me if I lost.
"He's just afraid you'll beat him. His ego can't handle it if you win." Edward joined in. "When you win." Edward smirked.
I growled. It was just like Edward to read my mind.
"Not cool, Edward." I said angrily. "Stay out of my mind."
I heard Jasper laugh on the other side of the couch. I punched him in the arm and he fell off the couch. He landed on the floor with a thud, but quickly jumped up and crouched into a defensive position.
"Boys!" Esme scolded. "There will be no fighting in my home!"
"Yes, ma'am." Jasper drawled before sitting back on the couch next to Alice though his eyes never left me.
"Hey, Jasper," Bella turned to look at Jasper. She had a mischevious grin on her face and I wondered what she was up to. She had to be up to something with the way she was looking at Jasper. I saw Jasper turn away from Alice to look at Bella.
"Yeah?" He asked confused.
"What about you?" She asked. "Will you arm wrestle me?"
Jasper contemplated her offer for a moment. I was pretty sure I knew the internal debate he was probably having with himself right now. I didn't need Edward's mind-reading power to know. He was thinking about testing her newborn strength, the way I had been, and what it would do to his pride if he lost. He thought about this for a few minutes before answering Bella. He turned back to Alice, his eyebrow raised in a silent question. She nodded to him and he looked back to Bella.
"Sure, where are we doing this?" No way. He could not be arm wrestling a newborn! He was insane! Maybe Alice had seen him beating Bella. Hmm. I wonder what she would have seen if I had said yes. Bella beamed at his words and they kneeled on either side of the coffee table in the middle of the room. Bella and Jasper rested their elbows on the table and clasped their hands in between their bodies on the table. Esme was the referee. She would make a fair call.
"All right." Esme said. "On the count of three. One. Two. Three!"
Bella's face narrowed in intense concentration. The muscles in her arm flexed as she tried to push Jasper's arm to the table. Jasper's face imitated Bella's, his brow furrowed. Bella grunted. How was she not kicking Jasper's butt? She should have slammed him by now! Maybe she wasn't as strong as everyone thought she would be. Interesting! Maybe if Jasper beat her, I would challenge her. I thought about this as I watched them fight it out. Jasper had Bella closer to the table, but Bella would quickly throw in a spurt of strength and she would gain control over the match. It went back and forth like this for five minutes before Jasper finally gained the upperhand and slammed Bella's arm onto the coffee table triumphantly. Bella's face was stunned. She hadn't expected to lose. She rubbed her arm where it had smacked into the table as if it hurt. Alice raised Jasper's arm and declared him the champion. I laughed. She wasn't as strong as we had assumed! Yes! I decided then that I would take her up on her offer.
"Okay, Bella. I'll take you up on that challenge now." I said a little too giddily.
"No, I don't think I want to." Bella pouted.
"Oh, come on! It'll be fun!" I begged, using her words she had used on me against her. Bella sighed in defeat and put her elbow on the table again, signaling that she would wrestle me. I smiled and quickly took my spot across the table from her. She obviously knew I wouldn't give up till I had beaten her. I gripped her small hand in mine and Esme referee'd again.
"Are you both ready?" Esme asked, glancing at Bella. She nodded, and Esme looked at me. I nodded also, and Esme started to count. "One. Two. Three!"
I felt Bella push my hand closer
to the table. I hadn't expected her to be this strong! She was
stronger than Jasper had made her seem. I used all my strength and I
managed to get the upperhand in this match-up. I almost had her arm
pinned when Jasper's hand grabbed our hands and slammed my arm down
onto the table.
"Damn it, Jasper!" I yelled. That wasn't fair! I would have won! I would've beat Bella fair and square! Bella just laughed.
"That's not fair! I call for a re-match!" I huffed angrily.
"Fine," Bella managed to say through her laughs. We resumed our position, our hands clasped together in the middle of the table between us.
"No interruptions this time," Esme said and I could tell that she thought Jasper's interruption had been funny. I scowled.
Esme counted to three and Bella and I went at it again. Battle of the sexes, who was stronger. This match was close, we went back and forth in a volley for ten minutes before I once again gained the advantage. Bella's arm was an inch away from the table when she put a burst of strength into the match and slammed my arm down easily against the table once again, but this time without Jasper's help. Bella jumped from the table whooping and bounced around, doing a little victory dance.
"Yay! I beat Emmett!" She gloated.
I stood up from the table and stalked away from my family angrily. No way had a girl just pulverized me! It was unfair! It would never have happened before, I was sure of it, and I knew I would have to issue her a challenge when she no longer had her newborn strength. There was no way she could beat me then, Bella was too weak. I growled. When I was upstairs I heard Bella worrying about how she had offended me and that maybe she should come up to talk to me. I didn't know how I would feel if she came up to apologize.
"Serves him right." I heard Edward say. "He's always going on about how no one can beat him. He deserved what he got."
I punched the couch I was laying on in mine and Rosalie's bedroom.