Disclaimer: I do not own the Twilight Saga.
And another million years has passed... I'm sorry!
Chapter Fifteen: That Goddamn Wedding
Jacob Black has been gone for a long time. Not that I really care, honestly, but some of the guys were getting a bit sentimental on the topic. 'Some guys' being by the name of Seth, Embry and Quil for instance. I, one the other hand, was starting to get envious of the fact that he actually could run, and I was left to deal with the sappiness that he could somehow block out completely by letting the wolf take over.
It was July, and I was lounging at home when the phone rang.
As people do, I answered it. "Hello?"
"Umm, hi, Leah? It's... This is Bella Swan calling... I was just wondering if I could speak to—"
I hung up.
Pfft. The nerve of that bitch, calling here. I don't give a damn if she wanted to speak to the freaking Pope; it's her fault Jake has gone all feral thinking animal, as if he doesn't even want to be human anymore. The packs attitude towards her was pissing Jake off, and it pissed me off even more that she had the nerve to actually call my house to check up on the guy whose life she single-handedly put in the shitter.
And what's worse, you ask? My flesh-and-blood brother has become fast friends with a leech. All over some pitiful bonding experience during the Newborn fight. Whatever. A leech is a leech and, bond or no stupid bond, there was no way I would let this go down quietly.
Finishing my patrol early in the morning, I skilfully snuck back into the house and overheard a low voice.
"Yeah... yeah, Bella, of course," it was Seth. "I'll be there. I'm not gonna miss your wedding "
"Seth!" I spat, my teeth gritting together.
The colour drained from his face. "Got to go," he quickly mumbled into the phone, before promptly hanging up.
There was a moment when I was so filled to the brim with rage that I couldn't manage anything else but glaring dagger after dagger into every inch of my little brothers very soul. And then the shit hit the fan. "What the fuck do you mean you're going to that wedding?" I blew up. "Don't you have any loyalty at all to this pack?" I knew I wasn't one to talk about pack loyalty, but attending a bloodsucker bash crossed a very undeniable line.
"So what if I am?" Seth resorted defensively. "Billy is expected there because of his friendship with Charlie. And mum's going to look after both of them in case something goes wrong. I'm doing a pack duty by going. Besides, Edward is my friend—"
"Seth," I was starting to shake, my fists quivering. "Those... those things aren't capable of friendship." I took a breath, closing my eyes and trying my best to remain in control of myself. "You know what? Forget it. I'll talk to Sam and your little fantasy of going to this wedding will be over."
I turned to walk away. Argument over, I thought. I didn't expect Seth to throw the phone in his hand across the room, his nose crinkled in anger. It left a dent in the wall.
"I don't believe this!" he shouted. "I'm so sick of being taken into special consideration because of your lame guilt-trip control over Sam!"
Well, that certainly shut me up. I gaped. "Excuse me?"
Seth composed himself. "Look. Edward is my friend, Leah, and I support Bella's decision to marry him. But even if I didn't, it wouldn't matter because it's their choice. Not mine, not Jake's, and not yours! He is a good person, he has a good soul—"
"He's a fucking vampire!" I sneered. "He isn't human, he doesn't have a soul "
"What are we then, Leah?" Seth asked slowly. "Tell me. I've been asking myself this for a long while. Because last time I checked turning into a werewolf doesn't exactly make us human. But we protect people. The Cullen's protect people—"
I growled in frustration. "Don't you dare compare them to us," I stormed away, back to the front door that I swiftly opened, ready to slam shut behind me. "We're not coldblooded. We're not murderers."
Seth looked at me sadly. "Are you so sure about that, Leah?"
For some reason, Seth's words really got to me. Killing vampires wasn't murder. It didn't for a second change my opinion of the parasites, or the shit-tastic wedding that was quickly approaching, but something about this whole situation had struck home. I was on my way to Claire's third birthday, at Emily's place. Princess theme. I hadn't planned on making an appearance, but even after everything Claire who I'd seen at my morning run on the beach had battered her little eyelashes, asked me if I was going and I was reduced to putty in her puny hand.
Nice to know my heart hadn't completely turned to ice.
Arriving there, I immediately noticed that Emily had gone all-out on everything, like always. There was pink and white fabric draping all over the little cottage house, with a table of many different pink and sprinkled desserts for the few children running around to get their sugar-rush from.
Everyone who entered was given a tiara by Emily who greeted them at the door, and much to my own personal amusement, a glittery crown sat on the heads of Sam, Quil and Embry. When she attempted to offer me mine, I accepted with a large, cheesy grin, and snapped the tiara in two and disposed of its remains under the sofa cushion the second her back was turned. Fuck her and her cheap-ass plastic bullshit.
When Emily suggested to the small, wide-eyed, hyper group of kids that they should turn poor old Quil into a princess well, that's when things got interesting. I knew I wouldn't be able to look at the guy the same way again, even as a ferocious wolf I would never be able to see past the lipstick smeared all over his cheeks. Despite Quil's obvious embarrassment, mixed with adoration at his imprints happiness at his face being turned into a colouring book, Embry and I sat together and laughed shamelessly at him.
After I ate one of Emily's cupcakes, it tasted so good I felt the urge to run outside and rub dirt on my tongue, I decided it was time for my escape. "You know what?" I stood and stretched. Having stayed on hour, I'd reached my tolerance level of Sam and Emily and screaming children in the same room. "I think I'm gonna go for a run."
Embry went to stand. "Do you want me to come with you?"
I scoffed. "I think I can handle myself." I snubbed. I'd also reached my niceness level for the next decade choking down Emily's cupcakes.
I waited till I was a safe distance from the house to phase. I was alone... well, a part from Jacob, who was still doing his best to ignore everyone and everything so it was pretty much like being alone anyway. He has such a thick head. Sometimes I wonder how he managed to lift it off his pillow in the mornings.
Surprisingly, I felt his annoyance at my thoughts. He was listening to me.
Maybe I could get him to talk.
So, I see you're living the life Jacob, I said sarcastically. Five-star accommodations, free meals... I can understand why you left, really. Come to think of it, all of this roaming the forests sounds great. I just might join you on your little holiday, what do you say to that?
Of course I knew what he would say. He'd say 'fuck you, Leah', but he'd gone back to blocking me out after his little slip-up.
Your girlfriend keeps calling my house, I tried again. I told her to jump off a cliff. Oh, wait... Ha, didn't she do that already?
Wow. He was getting pretty good at this stuff. Time to bring out the big guns, Leah.
Alright, I stopped running, to focus all my concentration on my words. I tried to sound as nonchalant as possible. You want the harsh truth, Jake? Well here it is. Everybody thinks you're a total pussy for running away. I mean, just up and leaving your poor dad like that? Pretty fucking irresponsible, Jacob. And you just need to come to terms that Bella Fuck-wit Swan is gonna marry that blood-sucking prick. As much as I hate to admit it, Seth is right. It's her decision, and she's chosen to skip right along and live happily ever after. Grow up. If she wants to die, who gives a shit? And if she wants to get it on with a frozen Popsicle, who am I to judge—
Leah, would you please shut the hell up? Jake snapped.
Ah-ha, I said triumphantly. Gotcha talking.
Jacob wasn't happy that he'd cracked. His fur was almost statically with annoyance.
Fine, you got me talking. Now what do you want? To tell me I'm being a selfish asshole? Tell me to come home?
His question took me by surprise. What did I want to say to him?
You know Jake, I could make you a whole fucking list of logical reasons of why you're a selfish asshole and why you should come home, I could sense his anger elevating with each thought that passed through our minds. Your half-way to breaking free... I'd kill for that. But unless Bella Swan completely disembowelled your balls and keeps them in a little jar on a fancy little mantle, you need to grow a pair and come back and face your problems. I hate to break it to you, but running isn't gonna make everything go away. Sooner or later, buddy, it's gonna catch up to you. Might be easier if it's on your terms, that's all.
I phased human, hoping he'd think about my words and let something sink into his brain.
When I got home I could hear Seth muttering on the phone. He placed it quickly back in its cradle as soon as I entered the room. "Who was that?" I questioned suspiciously.
"No one," he answered.
We had nothing else to say to each other, I didn't want to tell him that I'd actually spoken to Jacob after weeks of silence, so I went into my room and collapsed onto my bed. I was beginning to wonder if I'd told Jake the right thing, or if I'd just been jealous of his sort-of freedom. I mean, we could never ever be truly free as long as we maintained this mental connection to the pack. And if our situations were reversed, if I was running from Sam and Emily's wedding, I sure as hell wouldn't want to be there and wouldn't listen to anyone who told me I should even if that did make me a pussy.
On the day of Bella Swan's wedding, I was woken infuriatingly early by a loud banging on my window. I threw back the curtains to see a frazzled looking Quil and Embry; I unlocked my window and opened it as wide as it would go.
"What the hell's going on?" I asked, a little disturbed by their expressions. Both boys were out of breath. The colour in my face dropped as every possible scenario played in my mind, the most important question popped to my mouth as I prepared to dive out of my window and spring into action: "Is Seth okay?"
"Seth's fine," Embry reassured my quickly. "It's Jake."
"What's wrong with Jake?" my heart was hammering uncontrollably as I leapt out the window and was preparing myself to run as far and hard as necessary to reach him. That's why they would come to me, isn't it? It certainly wasn't for my blossoming social skills. If Jake was in trouble, out of everyone I would reach him the fastest. "Does he need help? Is he in danger? Where is he?"
"He's running," Quil huffed. "He's running to get to the wedding."
My jaw dropped.
Jacob was running. Jacob was running to that stupid wedding from the middle of fucking nowhere or where ever the hell he was. And it was all because of my big mouth. Most of the guys and myself had transformed to try and figure out exactly what was happening like if Jake's intentions planned on violating a certain treaty while Sam went to inform Billy that Jake was on his way back.
Jake man, what are you doing? Embry said, exasperated.
Don't do this now, Jacob, Jared warned considerately.
Jake, don't be an idiot, I hissed at him. He was concentrating on the blur of the trees around him. Almost counting them, trying to ignore us present in his thoughts. You don't have to do this. I was wrong, okay? Don't put yourself through something like that.
He wasn't listening to us again. Surprise, surprise.
It eased a little of my guilt when we realised that Jake seemed to have been heading back south our way for a while, it was just my words that made him realise and it clicked in his head. Great. He still seemed a long way away from us and from this thing being called a wedding, so most of the pack was hoping that the distance would prove too much and he'd miss the whole day.
I didn't put anything past Jacob.
If that guy wanted something bad enough, he'd find a way.
If this whole situation had been somewhat normal, I would be normally dressed up and sipping champagne and beer as normal people frolicked about doing perfectly normal things with other perfectly normal people at a dare I say it? normal wedding. I would certainly not be standing guard as a giant dishevelled grey wolf, ready to pounce on guests that would appear a little too homicidal for my liking.
And I'm not talking about the parade of single women itching for the claw-and-tooth fight to catch the bouquet.
Alas, I was covered in dirt, on four legs, standing in foliage and watching people dance and mingle with the most dangerous creatures that they've ever encountered, and quite unknowingly bewitched by their creepy beauty that they'd milk their own veins dry if it was asked of them. Funny how the world works.
There was absolutely zero chance I'd ever feel comfortable about this leech party, especially with Billy, my mother and brother right in the middle of what seemed to me like way too many bloodsuckers to be allowed in one place at one time. I just hoped my brother would be able to stay out of trouble.
Seth was just too far away, that if something happened I'd never be able to reach him in time. I tried hard not to think about it. Seth was smarter than that. Some of the Cullen's more, shall we say, pale guests had discreetly given him a curious sniff whenever they ventured close, but I was glad to see their repulsion and avoidance rather than them subtly sprinkling him with salt and pepper as some sort of furry appetizer.
Sam, Quil and Embry were playing werewolf security with me. None of us let our guards down for a second. No parasite was permitted to leave our line of sight. We watched everything.
Jacob had made it to the party after all. Sam grudgingly allowed him, but only keeping to the borderline of the trees, where we could keep a firm eye on him. Bella, selfish as always, was glad to see him. It was a little hard to watch him dance with her, his gaze so loving and hands so gentle.
But it didn't take long for him to snap.
Let's move, Sam thought instantly, and the four of us moved in to intervene.
Jake had lost it, and within that second my little brother had his arms around him, trying to pry him away. A growl escaped my teeth. If Jake completely lost control while Seth was holding on to him like that, he'd he torn to shreds.
Sam, do something! I shot desperately at our Alpha.
"I'll kill you," Jacob was hissing at the bloodsucker, Bella's husband.
Sam stepped forward, growling. It's over, Jacob. It's done. She's made her choice, time to go, he was shoving Jake away with his giant head. It surprised me that Jake allowed himself to be pushed along like that. Seth, Sam, Jake and the others disappeared into the darkness, I stared after them, contemplating the disaster that has just been averted.
"I'm sorry," I heard someone whisper. It was Bella. And she was saying it to me. I looked towards her bloodsucker hostilely. Keep her away from me or I'll tear her to pieces, I swear. She deserves it, after all she's done to him. He gave me a cold nod.
I huffed and followed the pack into the dark.
After the wedding, Jacob did nothing but mull over what the Cullen's had planned to stage Isabella Swans so-called 'death'. The pack tried our best to support him, to be there for him, but quite honestly it was getting more than a little irritating seeing him play out the scenarios in his mind, sometimes envisioning himself swooping in to her rescue before she would be engulfed by the fires of a burning plane.
Urgh. Let the bitch fry extra crispy, I say.
Before my morning jog along the beach, in a very spur-of-the-moment decision I decided to stop in the old corner store for a packet of crinkled salt and vinegar chips to munch on because I wasn't sure there was much left in the fridge for me to devour when I got home.
Chips snatched from the shelf and paid for, I started obliviously chewing away. Almost out the door, I had no way of knowing I was about to be ambushed by Heather Littlesea, Colin's overbearing, headache of a mother. She was standing just outside, probably having seen me go in for my snack and knew it was the perfect opportunity. Her arms were crossed and her face was looking more sour than usual.
In surprise, I inhaled half my packet and choked. "M-M-Mrs. Littlesea," I coughed, chips flying from my mouth. "Oh, I, er, didn't see you there." Well, I was standing point-blank in the middle of the open, so it's not like I could run from her without arising even more suspicion then the pack needs.
"Cut the crap, Leah Clearwater," Heather snapped, clenching the rosary around her neck tightly like I was some sort of demon that had risen from the earth. "What in the name of the Lord Almighty do you think you are doing with my son?"
"Me?" I cried, trying to seem the picture of innocence. "What the hell, lady?"
Colin's parents were one of the few that didn't know about the wolves, like Embry's mother. Normally, we would avoid them like the plague, and for good reason because this was already starting to get extremely awkward.
"Don't play dumb with me," she jutted a pointed finger to my face. "Look at you, wearing shorts and showing off your arms and stomach. What do you think this is, California? We're in Washington, dear. Just who do you think you are? Tempting my boy and all the others with your body and sinful ways. Colin is a good boy, and he doesn't want anything to do with that devil-worshipping cult your part of! How dare you use that little crush of his against him and leading him into this... this... monstrosity!"
I didn't want to make the situation worse. I really didn't. I know the correct response to defuse the situation would be to claim convincingly that 'I see the light! I shall repent!' and walk away. But, of course, I didn't. I made it a thousand times worse. Because I cracked up laughing. And not just little fits of giggles. I was pretty much rolling on the floor trying to keep my sides from splitting.
When I managed to calm myself, I'm sure I saw steam coming out of her ears. I cleared my throat, my face straight. "Well, I'm late for my meeting with my BFF, Satan. Bye Mrs. Littlesea," I said, and I ran off before she had a chance to douse me with holy water.
Actually, my meeting was with Rachel Black, which only made my words to Mrs. Littlesea funnier as I jogged along to the beach, sniggering to myself. I found it a bit amusing that Colin's mother figured we were the evil ones, when it was actually our 'cult' that stopped the real evil from snatching people like Mrs. Littlesea from her bed and night and eating her.
Rachel, the nerd, had graduated early. We had scheduled this morning to catch up, but I needed to be really careful with what I chose to say because she'd be questioning me harder than Heather Littlesea. Living back at home with her dad and Jake, she'd obviously grown suspicious of the activity going on. I don't think Billy wanted to burden her with the knowledge of the wolves. It was all strictly need-to-know.
We took this opportunity to patch everything up, since we'd left each other on a bad note when she had received Sam's scholarship. It didn't take long for things to return to normal between us. I was happy she'd gotten the chance to leave La Push and further herself.
Halfway down the beach, Rachel spewed out: "Lee, what's going on with my brother?"
I assumed she meant the general shifty-ness of everything he says and does, not to mention his depression and constant obsession of a girl that was about to become one of the undead. But I played dumb.
"What do you mean, Rach? He seems totally normal to me." If by normal you mean fucking crazy. "Why?" I asked her.
"I don't know," she said, frowning at the sand. "Something just seems off. You really haven't noticed anything?"
I gritted my teeth together. "Nope." Please forgive me for lying.
It was then that I saw a dark spec on the beach approaching us at a fast pace. Rachel squinted her eyes towards it, the sun in her eyes. "Who is that?" she asked, her hand cupped to block the glare of the light. "Wow, whoever it is they're pretty fast." I almost scoffed because I was at least ten times faster. Even though they were still a spot in the distance, I took a whiff of the air.
"It's only Paul," I sighed bitterly. It could only mean that I was about to be interrupted with wolf business.
Paul approached with his usual arrogant smugness, the kind that makes you want to shoot your own brains out.
"Hello Leah," he greeted with a smirk, before turning to Rachel.
His face went blank. "Hi," he said. It was the most un-self-righteous thing I'd ever heard escape his mouth.
"Um, hi," Rachel said in return.
Oh, hell no.
There was the look. The look.
That fucking look.
"You've got to be joking," I said to no one in particular, because the other two were too busy being absorbed in each other's eyes. I started walking in the opposite direction, talking to myself like an insane person. All my hard work to keep Rachel from discovering us for nothing, because Paul just had to go and imprint on her. "Another one? Really? Wasn't this fucking shit suppose to be rare?"
Seriously dude. What. The. Fuck.
Oh yes, the universe just threw another rotten egg in my face. Thanks universe!—for nothing.
Ha. Jacob was going to be fucking ecstatic.
Picturing his face, that made me feel a little better.
Hope you all enjoyed this chapter! I'll try and get the next one finished as soon as I can.
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