Disclaimer: Twilight and the characters associated with the story belong the Stephenie Meyer. I acknowledge that they do not belong to me, and am merely borrowing them for this particular story.
Chapter 1: Hiding and the Truth
The clearing, on the rare sunny days of spring, was a magical place to be, at least for the small child sitting on the damp grass, while running her hands through a thatch of clover. She had on a pink dress which covered all but her bare feet and ankles, as she sat with her legs straight out in front of her. A gently breeze ruffled through her soft brown curls, and the expression on her angel face was one of frustration. "I can't find one," she finally said, in a whispered voice she rarely ever used.
A tall young man standing a little behind her, who had been deep in thought until she spoke, moved by her side and sat down. "What can't you find Nessie?"
The voice was youthful, and the face that Renesmee looked into was of her very best friend. Since he was so much taller, even when sitting, the little girl had to stand up. She reached out and put her hand against his cheek. With little effort, Renesmee showed Jacob the picture she had found of the four leaf clover, in a book at Grandpa Charlie's.
"Ahh," Jacob answered, as she pulled her hand away. Her response was a big smile.
Satisfied that he now understood what she wanted, Renesmee sat back down waiting for him to help. When he didn't, she furrowed her brows and looked back at him. The expression on his face wasn't a happy one, and that started her to worry again. Lately everyone seemed sad, well maybe not everyone, but Grandpa Charlie was, at least some of the time. "Jacob, why are you sad?"
She watched as he shook his head before he cast his gaze back on her. The sad expression was gone, and Jacob smiled at her. "Sorry about that, I was just thinking about something."
That was almost the same thing Grandpa Charlie said last night, and suddenly, for some reason, Renesmee felt angry. "Why are you hiding from me Jacob? You are my best friend in the world and you were sad. Grandpa was too and I know there is something wrong," she finally said, feeling quite upset all of the sudden.
In an instant, the little girl found herself caught up in Jacob's arms and didn't mind as he hugged her. For a moment, she rested her cheek against his broad shoulder, taking in a breath, and then another before she calmed down. "Don't hide from me," she whispered sadly.
"Ness, I'm sorry about hiding," he said, as Renesmee lifted her head so that she could see into his eyes.
That sad expression was back on his face, and Renesmee felt her stomach do strange things. "Why don't you want to tell me?" It was evident by the way he looked at her, that he didn't want to say anything about what he was hiding.
"No, you have it all wrong. I do want to tell you, it's just that… aww screw them. Nessie the reason why some of us are feeling sad lately is because of the big change for all of us. See…"
"Jacob!" That voice belonged to her daddy, and he sounded angry, but why?
In an instant he was in front of them and he looked angry. "Nessie, go back to the house please." As he spoke to her, Renesmee noticed that his gaze was softer and from that she knew he wasn't angry at her too, but it still bothered her all the same.
"I want to know about the hiding," she said softly, unafraid to speak her thoughts to him even though he was capable of hearing her in his mind.
He knelt down, and a moment later she was standing in front of him while Jacob stood behind her. The moment her daddy reached for her, Renesmee went into his arms. "I promise that we will explain things to you, but right now I need time with Jacob, alone."
Worried that her daddy might somehow hurt Jacob, but feeling silly for that notion, Renesmee hesitated for only a moment before she placed her small hand against his cheek. Her memory was of the time her momma had almost attacked Jacob.
"No, I promise it won't happen like that," he said, in a very gentle, soothing tone.
"Nessie, would you come hunting with me?" Aunt Alice asked.
Hesitantly, Renesmee pulled away from her father, looking at him, then back at Jacob. He had his arms folded over his chest, and looked angry like daddy.
When Alice took her hand, Renesmee let her aunt lead her away, glancing back as they slowly walked into the trees.
The small doe in front of her, lifeless and drained of its blood, was something she barely looked at. Renesmee was no longer hungry, but, was instead distracted by Jacob's strange mood and everything else he had said.
"Nessie, do you smell that?" Alice asked.
"I don't want to smell," she whispered, standing up without a spot of anything on her pink dress.
Her Aunt left her own kill, and came to her side. "Why don't we go pick more of those wild flowers you love so much?"
"You are hiding too." Renesmee realized, at that moment, that everyone must know something that she did not. It was suddenly too much, and without thought to what she was doing or where she was going, Renesmee began to run. She was not as fast as the rest of her family and much smaller than the rest but her tiny legs carried her a great distance in a short amount time. When she finally stopped running and turned around, Renesmee was surprised. Instead of Alice, her momma was there.
"Please tell me now." Her sad voice went along with the very sad expression on her face.
Bella reached out, and Renesmee launched into her arms. "I'm sorry we didn't say anything. We need to move," she answered without hesitation.
That didn't make much since to her, and Renesmee touched her momma's cheek showing her how they had just been running.
"Not in that way," Bella began to explain as she sat down.
Renesmee sat facing her, figuring out another first by the tone of her momma's voice. She was also sad. "Don't be sad Momma." She put her hand on Bella's cheek, remembering well what being sad was like. It hadn't been that long ago since the time the Volturi came, and with that the fear that her family would be separated. They had all been sad, so Renesmee understood that.
"You are my amazing angel, do you realize that?"
"Please tell me why no one wants me to know." She moved her hand to rest against her lap.
"We do want you to know, we just didn't want to worry you. Renesmee, I'm sorry we kept this from you; it's just that this is difficult for me, and I didn't want to frighten you. We have to move away from here."
It was now clear in her mind. Moving meant that they were going to find another place to live. Just a few days ago when she was at Grandpa Charlie's house, Renesmee remembered him talking to Sue about Grandma Renee and Grandpa Phil moving from the house in a place called Phoenix to another place called Jacksonville. When they stopped talking, she had asked in a simple way what that meant. Grandpa Charlie had been surprised, but had answered her anyway.
Putting her hand back on her momma's cheek Renesmee showed her about what Grandpa Charlie had said, along with his surprise, and from that formed her question on why they needed to move.
"We can't live in a place for too long, and I want to attend college," Bella answered, smiling a little.
Renesmee sighed, feeling worse, but decided not to let them see. That would be easy, only daddy could read thoughts, and so she was going to try and not to think of her sadness if she could at all help it. "I want to pick flowers with Alice now."
Another day had come to an end, and Bella sat on the side of her daughter's bed watching her sleep. It still felt like a dream, but there were no longer those worries that had plagued them in the beginning of her new life as a vampire. For Bella, there was only the sadness in knowing that they had to move. The reasons were not really about going off to college, but revolved around Charlie. He was getting more and more uneasy. He didn't want to know the full truth and he was being strong, but Charlie could not overlook the fact that his granddaughter was almost the size of a three year old, and was barely a year old in biological years.
More than anything else, Bella wanted to tell him everything, but she knew the danger that would put him in. If he asked her for the truth, she would have a hard time not telling him as Jacob had so boldly and foolishly done with his own secret. Thus far Charlie had not, and it was a relief for her.
For the rest of the day, her daughter had played happily with Jacob and Alice, and Bella was grateful that Renesmee still possessed a child's mind. Oh her little girl's mind was so much more complex than any other child, but at the same time she had all the innocence of a little girl. Her mind was complex and yet she seemed to adapt easily to the life she had been brought into.
"Is she really as happy as she seems?"
Edward had entered the small room at that time, and knelt by the bed placing his hand gently against their daughter's cheek. Bella watched him, waiting.
"I think she is relieved to know what everyone else does, and relieved that I'm no longer angry with Jacob. I'm not sure she is as happy as she seems." As Edward said that, Bella watched as he moved his fingers through their daughter's soft hair. "She was very active today and she talked more verbally than she normally does. When I try to read her thoughts they are jumbled."
The peace she had felt just moments before, began to crumble as he told her what he heard in her mind. "I should have, we should have said something at the beginning, but she already worries about being different," Bella's words were softly spoken, and so quick that only a vampire would hear and understand.
The moment Bella finished, Edward was on his feet in front of her and when he offered his hand she took it. He led them away from their daughter's room toward their own.
Their bedroom wasn't very far away from Renesmee's and once the door was closed, Bella was drawn into her husband's arms. "This is not going to be easy for her. I had hoped we could stay longer, but after you told me what she showed you of Charlie's reaction the other day, it solidifies the decision we all need to make."
"Maybe if we told him," Bella tried, feeling the pain her daughter was toward saying goodbye. Forks was their home, now, more so than ever. "I'm sure that his knowing would be easier to hide than when I found out about all of you."
"Do you really believe that?" asked Edward, as his left brow drew up.
Edward still couldn't read her mind unless she threw the shield away from her body, and Bella considered doing that, but in the last moment decided not too. She shut her eyes as she began to speak. "When I was growing up I had to be the adult Edward," began Bella as she sat down on their bed. "I don't want Renesmee to feel uprooted the way I did."
When he was seated beside her, Bella turned her head seeing the sadness in his eyes. "I guess we didn't really anticipate her reaction to having to move from one place to the next," Edward offered, able to see the point she was trying to make. "But she won't have to be the grown up Bella. We are her parents, and we know from your experiences what we need to do differently. The first thing is keeping her informed, and to help her understand that this is not her fault."
All Bella could do in response was to nod. Her human years were still a fog, but the manner in which she had grown up was still a fairly vivid memory for her.
It had been very easy to climb out her window, and at the same time remember the dream and play that over in her mind. The likelihood of being able to get away without her daddy knowing about it was very slim, but Renesmee wanted to be alone. The dream was about her Grandpa Charlie knowing all about them so that they could live in Forks forever.
In only a few short minutes Renesmee reached the clearing and was immediately lifted off her feet. "What are you doing out here alone at night?" Jacob asked gruffly.
The dream disappeared in light of something else she thought of. When she began to cry he hugged her. "I didn't mean to make you cry," he said.
"I don't want to leave you," Renesmee answered, as she cried softly against his chest.
Jacob sat down on the damp ground, glad for once that it wasn't raining. At the same time, he wondered how Nessie had gotten away from the cabin without Edward knowing. "It won't be forever," he said as he rocked her.
"This is my fault. I don't stay the same," she answered in a voice barely above a whisper.
Seeing her in such pain was really difficult for Jacob to handle, and he considered running away with her only for a moment. "None of this has anything to do with you okay," he said, as he rubbed her back. While trying to calm her, Jacob could hear the fast approach of foot fall, and knew that Edward and Bella were on their way. More than anything else, he wanted to be the one to make Nessie feel better, but since that day with the Volturi, Edward and Bella were more protective of her. With that knowledge in mind, as they appeared in the clearing, Jacob knew he was going to have to leave her care with them.
"I don't want to leave Jacob," Nessie said as she wrapped her arms around his neck.
"Jacob, why don't you come back to the cottage," Bella suggested, and he felt relief that he would be able to stay with Nessie. It was going to be a real test of his will, not to go with them to New Hampshire. If not for his pack, along with need to keep his people safe, Jacob would be doing just that. As they made their way back to the cabin Jacob could feel the small child he held in his arms start to relax.
"You can live with us," Nessie said suddenly, as she lifted her head, looking right into his eyes with chocolate brown ones of her own.
How was he supposed to break her heart all over especially seeing such hope in her gaze? Now Jacob was glad that Nessie had parents, and it was Edward who came to the rescue, as he opened the door for them.
"Jacob has his pack to take care of," he answered, using a soothing tone as he spoke.
She still seemed hopeful. "They can come too," she said, as she yawned and smiled all in the same moment.
"Right now," Edward said, "you need to go to sleep," As he spoke, he lead them to the smaller bedroom while at the same time avoiding that discussion for a later time.
Once there Jacob leaned forward and put his small charge down in the sturdy bed. She had let go of his neck, but quickly grasped his hand holding on with both of hers. "I'm not going anywhere," responding to the panicked expression on her face. Jacob did however make room for her parents to hug and kiss her, something a little difficult with her hands still holding on to him.
"Jacob can stay with you, but you have to go to sleep," Edward told both of them as he looking from Nessie to Jacob.
"Night Daddy, love you. Love you Momma."
Once they were gone Nessie relaxed even more, letting go of his hand as she yawned again. "Jacob?"
"Nope, you need to sleep, just like your Dad said."
It was almost comical the way she looked at him with her lips puckered into a pout, but after another moment, her eyes grew heavy and a few minutes later she was asleep again.
Once sure she would remain asleep, Jacob went out into the very small front room, keeping his head ducked as he had when he entered the cabin. He sat down on the ottoman beside Bella. "I'm sorry I didn't bring her back when I found her."
"Don't worry about that. I never thought she would go off alone at night."
"Did Edward know she was doing that?"
When she didn't answer right away, Jacob seemed to understand why. "Oh, um," he said not sure what else to say.
"He was pretty upset when he figured out what had happened. We both get distracted," she said looking away from him.
"Yeah, um I think maybe I'll morph and sleep outside her window if that's okay with you."
"Sure," she agreed.
Outside, the moonlight glowed brightly against everything. Jacob rested beside the small window of Nessie's room, glad that vampires could be quiet when they wanted to be. He really had no desire to hear anything other than Nessie's steady breath.
Authors Notes: I just wanted to make note of how I figured her aging. For every biological year she ages three, by the time she is seven she would be like a 21 year old, so maybe not exactly three, but I'm just hoping to give you a rough idea of how this works at least in my verse. I love reviews, so please don't be shy, constructive is good. I also wanted to point out that Nessie is used in Jacob's point of view, the rest of the time I will just use Renesmee.
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