Hero by Night, Lover by Morning
He trembled as he slept, something she'd gotten used to
He trembled as he slept, something she'd gotten used to. It ripped her heart out, knowing why, wondering if maybe it was partially her fault. Although she loved him with everything she had, her love was her choice to give – his was not. And knowing that, knowing this, sometimes made her wonder if any of it was real, if it was all for naught.
She felt it when he said the words, felt it when he looked at her, held her, made love to her… but when he slept, the warmth would fade, leaving her with nothing but the cold, hard truth.
Love, as wily and manipulative as it was, did not bend to fate. It did not bend to blind destiny. The world could have one soulmate meant for you, but seldom did it stop a person from falling in love with the entirely wrong person. And, though she might have not been the one destiny had picked for him, it didn't make his love for her any dimmer.
Emily could only wish.
During the daytime, Sam whispered his love through his eyes, caressed her harsh scars with his lips, and she knew that she was loved. His hands would hold her delicately, feather light touches across her body, and she knew that she was loved. His kisses, hot and passionate, soft and sweet, all told her that he loved her.
But when his eyes fluttered shut and his body started trembling, she knew that the image behind those eyelids was of a woman long in his past, a woman he would never forget, never stop loving.
Emily sat up and buried her face in her hands.
Leah, always one to get herself in dangerous situations, had died months ago but her memory was still a constant presence in the house, in the pack. It was a brutal death, the kind where leftover innards spilled out and stunk the air. The kind where the eyes were wide open, staring blankly at an invisible image straight ahead and the tongue hung out, long and limp, because the bottom jaw had been ripped from its hinges.
Emily had mourned her death with the rest of the pack, feeling, among the remorse, a sliver of relief that she was too ashamed to admit, even to herself. In her mind, the obstacle was gone. Defeated.
It killed her to admit that she was just the tiniest bit happy.
Oh, how wrong she was, how absolutely stupid.
She turned in the bed to gaze upon the man she would give her entire life to. There was a tense crease between his brow and his face was contorted in an agonized expression. These nightmares were becoming a nightly ritual.
She pressed her hand against his forehead, wishing she could somehow soothe him.
His hand shot up and grabbed her wrist, making her gasp in surprise. Her eyes flew to his face and realized that he was still asleep.
"Sam?" she tried weakly, wondering if he was actually awake behind those troubled eyelids. His grip around her wrist tightened forcefully and she bit down a cry of pain.
"Leah," he muttered in his sleep, clutching her hand as if it were his only lifeline.
She fought the tears that sprang up when he uttered that one, fateful name.
"Leah," he murmured again, bringing her hand to his lips. She wanted to protest, to yank away from him. She wanted to hit him awake until he realized that she was Emily, not Leah.
Her heart burned.
"Every night," he whispered into her palm reverently. Those troubled eyes moved rapidly behind the closed eyelids. "Every night I save you."
A little piece of her died once more.
Author's Note: That's just a short drabble. I've been more and more interested in Sam's relationship with Emily and Leah. I thought the interest could last through a novel-length fic, but I don't have the heart to write something that's inevitably tragic and sad, as I love Leah's character, yet still sympathize with Emily. I'm not sure whether I hate or I love Sam and think that I'll decide to be okay with him and hate fate instead.
That being said, The Breaking Dawn Round at "The Twilight Awards" is now open for nominations! Go to my author's profile for details!