"Ugh! I can't believe you all are making me go back to school," Bella muttered angrily as she stumbled through the kitchen with her crutches.
"We need to keep up with the pre-tenses. The last thing we need is for even more attention than the what we've already received these past few days," Rose said with no sympathy.
"You'll be fine, love," I wrapped my arms around her waist giving her a small peck on her cheek.
I groaned internally not daring to voice my own reluctance on the subject of school. It was no secret that an ambulance had arrived at the Swan residence more than two weeks ago and that Bella had spent four days in the hospital. It was also no secret that Emmett and I were both on the scene and even though Charlie assured the good citizens of Forks, Washington that we had nothing to do with it they still gossiped amongst each other. Apparently they've all made their assumptions and suddenly us Cullen kids were in the limelight.
"You kids have fun today," Charlie said walking through the kitchen and grabbing an apple before disappearing towards the garage.
"The neighbors called 911!" Esme said raising her voice above the commotion.
About a second later Charlie's phone started to ring in his pocket. He jumped taking in the scene before him. As if seeing it for the first time he gasped, his eyes bulging out of their sockets as he reached for his gun, which was still downstairs hanging.
"What the…" his voice trailed off unsure of what to say, fear in his eyes as he first noticed that all eyes (with the exception of Bella's) were trained on him.
"Charlie, you need to answer the phone and tell them that you're alright," Alice ordered.
Charlie nodded mutely. He picked up the phone and repeated Alice's words monotonously. Now I know where Bella got her horrid acting skills.
"Ok, I did it. What are you all doing in my house? What are all of you? This is not normal!" He sputtered out.
His thoughts were as jumbled as the words coming out of his mouth, if not more.
"Are you human?" Charlie continued. "How's Bella? You stay away from her!"
He threatened Carlisle, but his tone was laced with fear as he watched Carlisle trying to stop Bella's bleeding.
"Rose, Alice, Esme, and Em, get out. There's too much blood," Carlisle commanded.
"Bella's bleeding? Is my baby going to be ok?" Charlie asked worriedly.
"Emmett has to stay," Alice said.
Charlie searched the room, his eyes bulging even more when he realized that the other girls were already gone.
"Why?" Carlisle asked, his eyes never leaving Bella's form.
"We need an alibi. Emmett is it," Alice stated. "Carlisle, without him you might get in trouble. Bella had another flashback, Edward was here at the time. Charlie thought Edward was hurting Bella and came after Edward with a gun. Edward called Emmett for back up. Everyone went at it. You found out what had happened and you came over to get your sons and this is what you found."
"Why does Emmett have to be here? Can't I just say that Charlie and Edward got into a disagreement?" Carlisle retorted.
"No," Alice shook her head. "I keep seeing Edward in jail if Emmett isn't here. He's going to lose his temper. Emmett has to hold him back."
The door downstairs opened and I could hear the footsteps of Fork's finest rushing up the stairs, their voices loud even by human standards.
"Go!" Carlisle whispered.
In a flash Alice was out. Poor Charlie looked like he was about ready to faint. Emmett and I stood dumbfounded as to what to do. His own anger for my attacking Rose was forgotten as he fought the urge to push Carlisle aside and suck Bella dry. I growled at his thoughts, but I knew that he was trying to withstand temptation so I did nothing else.
"You alright, Chief?" a lanky deputy asked looking wearily at the damage then over to Emmett and I.
Charlie looked over to Carlisle who gave a slight nod of the head encouraging Charlie to go along with Alice's story, which he had already forgotten.
It was strictly by fear that Charlie had nodded his head to signify he was indeed 'ok.'
The deputy looked down to see Bella's form in Carlisle's arms.
"Son of a bi…" his voice trailed off. He grabbed his walkie talkie and ordered for an ambulance to arrive at the house before practically shoving Carlisle out of the way to examine Bella.
"What happened here?" he asked looking up at Charlie.
"Uh…" Charlie cleared his throat.
'Well you see Ray, the Cullen's who are indeed not human actually came in here and tore this house apart!' Charlie thought sarcastically. 'They'll take my badge for sure if I say that.'
"A really big misunderstanding," I said stepping up hoping that I had enough regret in my voice to be persuasive.
"Is that true Charlie?" Ray's eyes narrowed in on his boss.
"Yes," Charlie nodded his head dumbly.
"What should we do about this Chief?" Ray asked waving his hands around the entire mess known as the second floor.
"Right now my only concern is my daughter, Ray. Where's that ambulance they should be here by now!" Charlie said snapping out of shock and going straight into father/chief of police mode.
"Are you going to tell me what the hell you guys are?" Charlie snarled under his breath as I followed him outside to the ambulance.
"Yes, in due time. Thank-you for covering for us," I responded.
"Should I even be?" he questioned.
"We appreciate it just the same, Charlie," I said not acknowledging his question.
How can I say that he should be? Bella was hurt because of me, because of what my family is. This was nothing either if the Volturi were truly coming. I have endangered the one I cared about most. I've failed to protect her twice in one month. I failed to protect her from that silly stupid human and now I failed to protect her from my own sister. Human and vampire alike, I have failed to protect my love.
I sat in the waiting room forgetting to shift in my seat like normal humans. I sat forgetting to fidget or blink or even make a noise. My mind was concentrated on how much I have failed. I can't keep doing this to her. I can't keep hurting her. What good am I if I can't protect the one I love? What's the point? Bella was my redemption and I had failed to protect her. For all of that I deserve this damned existence. I deserve eternal hell for failing her.
"Edward, stop blaming yourself," Emmett's voice cut through my own thoughts.
I looked up slightly bewildered at the fact that my older brother was giving me advice and not teasing me like I was so used to.
"My fault…" I muttered shaking my head.
"Bro, I've known you an awfully long time. Maybe not as long as Carlisle has known you, but I know enough to know that whenever you think it's your fault, it's usually not," Emmett retorted.
He gave me a small slap on the back careful to be as gentle as possible. The last thing we needed was the sound of thunder emanating from our skin connecting. I gave a smile unable to resist taking comfort in the wise words that Emmett so rarely gave out.
"Edward," Carlisle's thoughts called my name and I looked up to see my father figure approaching the waiting room, Bella's file in hand.
I got up meeting Carlisle half way.
"She's ok. The combination of surprise as well as force when Rose attacked her caused a tension pneumothorax, but we were able to re-inflate the lung with no troubles. She's on crutches but there were no breaks anywhere. She's very lucky as she only has a mild concussion," Carlisle explained. "Alice called me and said that she'll be coming with Jasper soon and you two will explain the situation to Charlie. She also informed me that Charlie and Bella will be moving into our house so Esme is currently preparing the guest room for Charlie," Carlisle said, his voice way too low for any human to hear.
"Can I see her?" I asked.
Carlisle nodded and I side stepped away before nearly sprinting towards Bella's room number, which I had conveniently taken from Carlisle's mind. I stopped for a second bracing myself for the talk I knew I had to have with Charlie.
I sighed and slowly opened the door, stepping in and then to the side bracing myself for the onslaught of questions I knew I could no longer avoid.
"Bells, how'd you get into this mess?" Charlie's voice was quiet, nearly a whisper as he gently massaged the back of Bella's hand with his thumb.
Tears fell from Charlie's eyes as he took in his daughter's battered appearance too engrossed in that to acknowledge my appearance. I coughed and then winced as he jumped from his seat startled.
"You…" his eyes narrowed at me. "You have explaining to do!"
"Yes sir," I stated my eyes dropping to the ground.
If this was any other time I would have laughed at the fact this man in front of me was able to intimidate me in ways that dangerous predators could not. However, he was Bella's father, one of the most important people in her life and I could not be on his bad side.
"What are you all?" He asked.
I opened my mouth. "We're vampires," Alice took the words right out of my mouth as she flitted gracefully into the room, a rather tortured looking Jasper besides her.
"What?" He fumed confused.
"We won't hurt you though. Or Bella," I added seeing the slight fear in his face.
"Billy warned me about all of you! Said you were dangerous," Charlie stated starting to pace the room.
He got within five feet of me before flipping back around nearly falling on his face in the process. I suppressed the urge to roll my eyes. So this is where Bella got her clumsiness. I proceeded at vampire speed to catch him mid-fall only to have him stumble backwards nearly falling on his rear in shock.
"How'd you do that?" Charlie demanded yanking himself away from my grasp before leaning against the wall.
"Please keep up," Alice stated. "We don't have much time. You're in danger."
"From who? Why don't we have much time? Does Bella know what you all are?"
"I'm afraid we've made quite a big scene these past couple of days," I stated. Charlie snorted in response. "Anyways," I said choosing to ignore the rather immature response. "The Volturri are less than pleased with our actions and the fact that you know."
"Who are they?"
"Um…well they are kind of like the police of the vampire world," Alice said trying to help explain the royal family.
"Ok, so they are the good guys," Charlie said looking between the two of us.
"Usually," I sighed. "But they like to keep our world a secret at whatever means necessary from any humans. So far you have seen first hand what we are able to do…well you and the rest of Forks High School, but that's besides the point."
"So…what? Why am I in danger? Aren't you guys the ones in danger?"
"Yes. We all are," Alice said stepping forward. Charlie took a step back forgetting that he was leaning on a wall to begin with and thus smacking his head into it.
"Charlie, it's safer if Bella and you stay at our house for now," Jasper stated, clearly using his powers as his voice came out as reassuringly as possible.
"Why do I feel like I want to say yes?" Charlie asked suspiciously.
"Because you know that it's safer," Jasper stated nodding his head, not breaking eye contact with Charlie.
**End of flashback**
"I think he likes it here," Bella stated interrupting my thoughts.
"I think that it's all Jasper," I said shaking my head.
"I think you're right," she laughed. "So…why am I going to school again?"
A/N: It's a little bit haphazard, but I can assure you guys that I am back and ready to start updating constantly. I hope you guys enjoy this and I hope that you guys will be continuously faithful in your reviews. Thanks for all your support guys and I hope you know that it's the readers who keep this story going.