Escaping Sol: YA Edition
Rising Above the Dawn:
I'm writing a little story called Escaping Sol, but it doesn't reach quite the audience it could because it is a "mature" story. One of my readers, Tammy, was incredible, and did endless hours of labor to make this work a YA story. I would never have even begun to go about a project this large… and so I owe her an ENDLESS amount of thanks. I have another beta named Cullenista who regularly goes out of her way as well to make sure each chapter is not grammar impaired. She's an incredible writer, so look her up as well.
For the first time in what felt like months I opened my eyes. None of the burning pain that had accompanied my change into this new life was evident when I flexed my fingers and toes. I felt very stiff, as if every muscle in my body had tensed up at once. Perhaps this was a natural state for one such as I? Maybe my body would forever be stuck in a state of what could only be described as rigor mortis. That is what this was right? Un-life? Vampirism was a cold endless damnation that was meant for an unchanging creature that thirsted endlessly for the blood of their once human companions. This is what I had been told over and over by my love. I want to say that the event itself had not been a surprise. I want to say that I had honestly weighed my options in my hand and made a decision to be like this… but this is not how I had wanted to experience this transformation. I had been left to scream and tear at my body. I saw the bloody hand prints left on the remains of the bedclothes and shivered without feeling cold. I would never feel cold again.
I rose slowly off of the shabby bed that had been the companion of my conversion. It reeked of sweat, blood, and the other fluids of my old life, however I could not blame its state on anyone but myself and perhaps those who had taken me. I took a strange comfort from the wasted mattress and tattered sheets. They had been my only constant companions. When my feet touched the floor I was momentarily shocked that I would only feel the stone under my feet but not the chill that would normally accompany it. I was certain the room was dank and chill… but I could not feel it. I would never feel these things again. Hopefully I would be allowed to eventually walk in the sunshine. To feel the warmth beat down on my marble skin. Right now I had no hopes. I could not afford them. I didn't know what was going to be my fate… if there is even fate for the eternally damned. That is how I felt at the moment anyway. Perhaps this is the reason that Jasper spent all of his time drowning in books on philosophy. Maybe it was the monster and the man making sense out of his own purpose, a kind of personal illumination.
As I looked around myself I noticed that the room was illuminated by its own sort of half light that seemed to come from nowhere and everywhere. It cast everything in a light almost greenish hue. There were no real shadows here. Some of the green was darker… but nothing was cast too dark for me to see. A rodent was scampering in and out of a hole in the wall dragging bits of cloth that I identified as a part of my now completely demolished clothing. It reminded me of the state of my dress, and I looked down at my pale nakedness. The skin on my body seemed to radiate light in the darkness. In some places it glittered and caught my attention as I moved about lightly. I was different now. There was no question of it in my mind. The small bulge of my stomach was gone and was now toned as if I had been to some kind of expert trainer. My legs were sinuous and I could see where they corded in places on my thighs where I had never even imagined that I had muscles, and tapered down to my feet. My feet like white marble against the darkest of grey granite beneath them. Feet that, for the first time in their existence, had not yet caused me to trip. This was despite being tangled in sheets that had been torn and wrapped around themselves in the throws of agony only hours before while my flesh and bones burned from the inside out.
Remembering the shock and pain I had suffered when Aro had sprung forward and sunk his teeth into my chest I looked at my breast to examine any damage that may have followed me into my eternity, but the skin was smooth except for a small indention in the half moon shape of an in-human bite. That small imperfection that I wished I could tear out of my own body. The symbol of my immortality had not been brought to me by my heart's desire. I looked at my palm and saw that this scar too had followed me into forever. The only two marks that would be a part of my living death, and one of them was like a reminder of the life before, it was James' bite. My only evidence of myself as I had been… no, that wasn't true either. I looked at the ring that still adorned my left hand; Edward's ring had not left its place. It had not been stolen from me yet, and it sat there like a promise. It was a symbol, an endless golden circle that sat there as physical evidence of my promise that I was his. To be bound to one another in the most human way possible. Forsaking all others and binding our souls for eternity. What if Edward was right and I had lost my soul? What if Aro had taken the very thing that I had pledged to my love? I was almost surprised by the high keening wail of grief and the feeling of falling as I came to my knees. It didn't hurt to fall anymore, but the pain in my heart… the Edward sized hole that I knew so well was back. Only this time we had been cruelly ripped from one another.
I had almost romanticized my change. It would be a part of my wedding. After we had said our vows and finished saying our goodbyes for the sake of Renee and Charlie, Edward and I would convene in our last human rite. We would finally make love. To be joined as a woman and a man. This deed would be done in the way that Edward and I had decided was the best way to try. Thinking about the discussion we had actually engaged in would have caused me to blush even now, had I been able. There was going to be nothing spontaneous. We had, with much muttering on his part, and an endless stream of blushing on my part, decided on what would happen. It was for my safety. I tried to picture it in my mind and felt my breathing hitch with pain.
I had been looking forward to this just as much as I was looking forward to becoming his equal. Carlile had Esme, Jasper had Allice, Rosalie had Emmet, and now Edward would have Bella. It was like the natural order had been reached for everyone. The Volturri had destroyed our happiness as surely as poison. I had wanted Edward, my vampire lover to bring me to his lips and sink his teeth delicately into my waiting flesh. The last week had taken all of that hope and dashed it in the worst ways possible. Kidnapped, hidden away, and transformed into a monster against my will. I was now the shining example of everything I had at one time begged to be. There was nothing romantic about being angry, emotionally destroyed, alone, naked, and thirsting for blood. For that is what I felt now, the burning thirst in the back of my throat that signified my deep inhuman hunger.
Edward would have kept me from the innocent blood of humans. He would have held me back from my endless thirst. The venom filled my mouth at the very thought of feeding. It was becoming painful to the point of anguish. I would be given fresh blood. The Volturri had no compunction about the killing of innocents. After all what was unconscionable about killing a cow? I heard them approaching before they ever came near the door. My mind was becoming a haze. I could only hear the beating heart on the other side of the barred entrance. The palpitating organ was filled with fear. My body picked itself off the floor and crouched waiting for the prize on the other side of the heavy locked portal. I heard a struggle taking place.
Whatever they were brining me knew what was waiting on the other side as well. As the lock was pulled back from the door and what I could only picture was a heavy wooden bar was brought back I felt the venom pool against my tongue. I knew it would be like ecstasy. Better than the physical coupling Edward and I had planned.
A young woman was shoved through the door and the lock slammed down behind her. Tears welled from the corner of her eyes and I heard her screaming for Felix. How could he do this? How could he betray her? She wore a torn and bloody suit. It was probably expensive. I was naked. It didn't matter. She threw herself against the door as the wooden beam was brought back across the other side of the locked edifice. She banged and swore and screamed. I growled and she spun toward me. She looked for a second as if she would be sick, and then she cried out my name.
"Bella! Please! Don't do this! Bella!" Gianna cried out and fell to her knees before me, as if I had any choice. Her blood was quick and would make the thirst go away.
I could still hear the fear in her every heartbeat… I could smell it in her very breath. I hissed and she jumped back against the door again even as she was sprawled against the floor. Hadn't she wanted this for herself? Hadn't she wanted to be the monster that I was? I remembered the room full of strangers that she had willingly, probably smilingly, led to their destruction. Heidi had brought them past her desk just as surely as I had walked past with Alice and Edward. How could she possibly plead to me? How was this any different? This was sweet revenge for the souls that she had thrown to the pits of hell. I would be their sweet adjudicator.
I sprung forward and tore the distraught receptionist's clothes away from her throat. I prepared to sink my teeth deeply into her skin and tear away the flesh. To taste the sanguine liquid that pumped life through her body.
Then I heard it. The sweetest voice I had ever known.
"NO BELLA!" It was Edward. He was going to save me. This was no different than cliff diving. No different from placing myself in any other danger. I clutched at my head and felt the venom sliding down my throat. "FIGHT IT!"
I curled into a ball and locked my arms around my legs. Edward would speak to me when the draw was at its most virulent. Every time it felt as if I could not hold back he would call out to me and I would cower from myself. I rocked back and forth letting the endless moment pass. The woman cowering before me did the same. I let out a small vocalization of my misery.
I don't know how long we sat there Gianna and I. Each one lost in pain and misery. Each moment her heart beat became more steady, and so did I. Slowly I looked up at her. She was still alive with her fear.
"This is what you wanted to be? This is what you yearned for?" I closed my eyes and tilted my head back. It was the first thing I had said in this new body of mine. I sounded more lyrical than I remember. I was expecting to croak a bit from the experience of the last few days…but I was obviously physically over it.
"How is this even possible? What are you? How can you sit there and fight the hunger?" She almost brought up a hand to touch me and I snarled. I had heard her pulse get closer and I didn't want that. I wanted to sink my teeth into the waiting skin and take what had been rightfully given to me. My head snapped back down toward Gianna.
"STOP BELLA!" Edward cried out against my desires. They faded once again. I rocked gently back and forth.
"You would rather that I just let go?" I let my head fall back again.
"Definitely not, although I will meet the same end if they find you and me in here alone together. They will not let me live now that they have decided to kill me." She seemed very sure of her death now that she had calmed down enough to get used to the idea. I hoped that she had just lost her mind with fear.
"Don't get all snack-like on my account. I'm not waiting for you to get groggy and lethargic just to suck your blood when you get bored. I'm expending a lot of energy that I really don't have right now. Why don't you waste your efforts in a different way… like figuring out how we escape?" It was becoming easier to be around this despicable creature. Edward would be very proud of me.
"There is no way out of this room. That door could stand up to three newborn vampires. There is nothing for me and you but to wait here and let fate decide."
I gave her a very narrow glare at that statement. "Fate is doing too much decision making for me lately. I don't like it at all. I'm supposed to be on my honeymoon attacking a moose right now in the Alaskan wilderness… not deciding whether or not to turn you into a la carte. Please stop trying to make yourself seem tasty."
Gianna seemed to think about this for a second and I knew that she was weighing her options again. "How would you leave Volterra without being noticed? What would you do to set us free? Most importantly… we are in no visual shape to be seen outside right now. The sun is high in the sky… and you have no clothes. I look like I have been beaten. I can't even believe I am alive to have this conversation…" She looked at me as if I were some kind of unusual animal.
"What if we didn't beat aimlessly against the door? What if we took it apart?" I had seen the movie Ever After. It gave me hope against big old doors. Of course the hinge was not on my side. I would be forced to improvise. I stood and examined the door. It was every bit as solid as Gianna had made it seem. Until I started to peel back the metal braces on the wood. Each band of metal slowly pulled away from the door and the thick nails and screws that bound it together. I was taking apart a very old very historic door… with my fingers. It was a little strange… but also liberating.
"What are we supposed to do when we are done taking apart the door? Run for the rest my life? You think they won't just go back to Forks and find the Cullen family wherever they go? Aro wants you! He has seen your potential. There is nothing that he won't do now that he has seen all of this." Gianna pointed to herself and then to the door.
"Well… that's why I'm going to go see him." The woman stared at me in shock. I was not doing anything positive for her blood pressure. It was going through the roof again.
"WHY?" The woman looked at me with a crazed gleam in her eyes. "You think he went to all of this trouble just to give up?"
"I think he'll understand his position when I explain it to him. I want my family back. I want peace. He took everything from me…" I was getting angry and snarling slightly in the recently viciously fired secretary's face. She cowered away from me and Edward came into my mind again, cooling the fires of my thirst. "I am leaving. I am going back to Forks, getting married, and then saying goodbye to my Mom and Dad. Then I am going to Alaska with my husband. I don't particularly care what has been planned for me here in Voterra. I want to go home… if there is anything left to go home to."
The planks started coming away from the frame and I set them in a neat pile by the opening. For some reason I couldn't just tear apart such an old and persevering piece of history. Maybe it was my usual respect for stuff that was older than me. I stepped into the hallway my hair blowing gently in the drafty portal. I began my walk away from the room I had been "reborn" in and Gianna got up and cowered behind me as I walked freely, nakedly, up the stairs and toward what I hoped was the unmistakable scent of Aro.
Feel free to tell me what you think. I hope I left you at a good place. I will respond to any questions you might have as quickly as possible. I am a wife and mother first so please be patient.