Disclaimer:

All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. No copyright infringement is intended.

Thanks to Forks1, shabbyapple and WtVoC for the beta job on this!


Too Much Information by Heartbroken1

Charlie Swan

Something wasn't right. Bella was sick, and the constant run around and lack of information from the Cullens was getting on my nerves. If they didn't clarify things soon, I was going to have to march over to that enormous white house and demand answers -- armed, if necessary.

For the first time ever, I turned off a basketball game at half-time and scrubbed my face with tired hands. Every part of me was exhausted. Sleep was not a luxury I had these days. If I did sleep then I dreamed, horrible nightmares that had me jerking awake in a cold sweat. Bella with red eyes, pleading for me to stay away. Moving my head from side to side did nothing to dislodge the memories.

A soft knock on the front door caused me to jerk upright, nearly sending me into the floor. After a deep breath, I forced the recliner closed with a snap and stood. Jacob was visible through the tiny window at the top of the door and he was shifting nervously from foot to foot. His anxiety caused mine to spike before I'd even opened the door.

"Hi, Charlie," he said with his usual smile on his face, but the normal twinkle in his eyes was gone.

"Jake, what's up?"

He was wearing his standard attire; cotton shorts and… nothing else. I looked up and down the street, but there wasn't any sign of a car, no motorcycle and the kid wasn't wearing any shoes -- so it's not like he ran here.

"Um, how'd you get here, son?"

The older Jacob got, the more bizarre he became. Nothing the kid did seemed to surprise Billy, who took everything in stride, even defending his son by explaining away the events as simple teenage behavior. I didn't buy it, though.

"My mode of transportation isn't important, Charlie." His tone was irritated. He took a deep breath then let it out in two words. "Bella's home."

That was not what I expected to hear, but my body immediately reacted by grabbing my keys and jacket, preparing to march over and pound down the door of the Cullens. They had no right to keep my daughter from me. I didn't care if she was married to Edward now. She would always be my daughter. What else had they been keeping from me?

"Whoa, hold up, Charlie. There's more."

"Is she… I mean, she's okay, right? They won't tell me anything. Just kept giving me the whole 'we don't know' routine." I was rambling.

"Charlie. She's fine." The look on his face didn't convince me. "There's something I'd like to um, show you." His fidgeting started again and, before I'd even been given a choice, he walked out the door, towards the woods.

"Okay," I mumbled into the thin air around me as I slunk behind the kid that would have been a better choice for my daughter. He wasn't hiding things from me. On the contrary, he had always been truthful.

Jacob stopped once we were deep into the undergrowth of the forest, even the sun was having a hard time peeking through.

"What's so important that you had to drag me out into the middle of…" His thumbs slipped into the waistband of his shorts. "Jacob!" His name left my mouth half gasp, half shriek. "What the hell are you doing?" The kid had a great physique, but I'd seen as much of it as I wanted.

"Let me show you this and then…"

"Oh no, you don't. I don't want to see anything under those shorts of yours, son."

He snorted, rolled his eyes and let out a hoot of laughter. "That's what I'm showing you. If you have to, close your eyes for ten seconds, then open them. Okay?"

I nodded, closing one eye, then the other reluctantly. I'd never in my life been nervous with Jacob, but right now, warning bells of every size and shape were ringing with ferocious velocity inside my head. I began counting. "One, two, three…" There was a shaking noise and I forced my eyes open.

A scream that resembled that of a scared little girl rang through the trees. It took a few more seconds to realize that it was coming from me. But then again it wasn't every day you opened your eyes to see a gigantic wolf standing where your best friend's son had just been. My heart stuttered, but gratefully resumed a normal rate -- for a hummingbird. But hell, at least it hadn't stopped completely.

"Jake?" I asked the ridiculous question. Like the animal would answer, but it did. It nodded its head, then took a step toward me, which I matched with another one back. "Get back here, young man and explain this to me." I was going for a firm order, but the shaking in my voice kinda blew it.

Jacob did as I asked though and, right before my eyes, melted back into the boy I recognized.

"That was one hell of a trick, Jake. How long did it take you to set up the mirrors?"

His face was somber. "No mirrors, Charlie." He slid his shorts back over the bare skin I'd forgotten about until he started to move. "You know those crazy legends that my dad likes to talk about?"

I shook my head, refusing to believe any of this.

"They're true. I'm a werewolf. A nice one," he added with a laugh. "It's my job to protect the tribe from…" He paused, examining my face that was probably white as a sheet since the blood had just rushed out of it. "What if I were to tell you that Bella's back, but she can't stay for long unless you know her secret?"

"She has a secret? Like yours? Oh, hell, Jake, you didn't turn her into a wolf too? You better not have bitten my… Wait! How did you turn into that without a full moon?"

He let out a bark of laughter that caused the birds to flee. "Hollywood never gets it right, and no, Bella is not a werewolf…. But…."

Adding a 'but' onto that sentence was going to cause my heart to fail right here, right now. Good Lord, what was this kid going to drop on me next?

"There is only one thing that I am made to kill."

I raised a brow. The idea of his killing anything didn't please the Chief in me. "Really? Do we need to be doing this at the station, Jake?"

"You're killin' me, Charlie."

"No, Jake, you've made my heart stop and start now more times than I can count. Stop with the code talk and just spit it out. What does you being a …werewolf… have to do with my daughter?"

"The wolves are made to protect the pack from the cold ones."

I'd heard that particular legend and had always dismissed it as such. "What the hell are these cold ones?" As soon as the question left my mouth, and before he had a chance to answer, I put my hands up in the air. "Never mind. I don't want to know. Just please explain what all of this has to do with Bella."

"Bella has gone through some changes."

Oh, hell. The world began to sway back and forth under my feet. Thankfully, the tree next to me was steady as my palm pressed against it for support.

"Because of those changes, she won't age. And now, she has two options. One, she leaves and never comes back."

"No."

He smiled. "My sentiments exactly. Or option two, you know that she's not getting any older and accept her and these changes."

"Okay, I can do that as long as you don't tell me anything else."

"There is more."

My heart sunk to the ground and I had to sit down on a fallen log to keep from falling myself.

"Bella has a baby."

"Bella's pregnant?" I think I'm gonna be sick.

"No, she has a baby."

None of this made sense, and his talking in circles wasn't helping with the clarity thing. "So, I'm a…uh, a grandpa?"

"Yep, Gramps."

That was the first piece of good news I'd gotten. I'd always wanted to be a grandpa. It just was happening much earlier than I'd thought it would.

He smiled, a look of pure adoration in his eyes as he spoke about my granddaughter. "She is a beautiful little girl, her name is Renesmee."

"Renesmee?" What on earth would possess Bella to name the child that. They would tease her horribly at school. But, if what I was being told was true, public school wouldn't really be a problem for her.

"Would you like to see her?"

I practically jumped out of my skin at just the thought of seeing Bella and holding her daughter. "Do you think it would be okay?"

"I think so. Give me a head start, then meet me there in a bit, okay?"

"Okay."

His fingers slipped into his waistband again.

"Hey, Jake."

He stopped and turned. "Yeah?"

"From now on, I'm on a strictly need-to-know basis, okay? I like being in the dark. It's a less confusing place."

"You got it, Gramps."

Gramps. That was a title I could easily get used to.


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