Chapter One

I like to think that everything happens for a reason. Like somehow everything that has happened over the past eleven months was suppose to happen, and no matter how hard I tried to change it, it would still have the same outcome. I took comfort in that for a reason, like me knowing that I couldn't change the future would somehow make everything okay again. But I knew that I could say yes to all of Edward's pleadings for me to take him back, and, with some adjustments, everything would almost be back to normal. But I also knew that if I did do that, it was just showing a weakness. And it was a weakness I was not about to show.

I had thought about what Edward had told me for the past week, going over every single detail in my head, trying to figure out what exactly everything meant. I wanted to know the amount of sincerity behind each and every word he said to me, just to keep to myself. Maybe this was all lies? Maybe it was the truth? Either way, I was not going to bend my choice. The answer is final.

So now, as I sat on a cold hard bench of the Seattle airport, waiting for something, I could finally let my mind clear. I wasn't going to think about Edward or Charlie or Renee or anyone at school. I was going to think about me, and only me, just for a moment.

Renee, like most moms do, told me I was worth more than the starts themselves, and that if someone couldn't see that, then they must be blind. And I believed her, telling myself that if Edward had to guts and nerve to leave me the first time, what makes me so sure he wouldn't leave again?

It was cold in Seattle... and rainy, too. As I looked out onto the paved roads, all I could see were water droplets splashing against the ground, flicking on the windshields of cars and bouncing off the umbrellas of those who were forced to walk. I was so into watching that I didn't even realize that someone was there.

"Bella," he said his voice just as I remembered it from those weeks ago. When I looked up, I saw Carson and Lauren, who were officially a couple now. There were just standing there, grinning. Lauren was only wearing a sweater and jeans, so I guessed she must have been pretty cold, and Carson was wearing a jacket and sneakers; he probably thought about the weather before he came.

"Carson!" I said, jumping up to hug him for a moment before turning to look at Lauren. "Lauren!" We hugged, too, and then smiled as we looked at each other. "How are you?" I asked, my eyes twitching back and forth from Carson to Lauren and back again.

"We've been good," Lauren said as she grabbed Carson's hand. I saw him squeeze it gently. "We missed you."

"I missed you, too," I told her with a laugh. It felt nice to be with these two again, even if all my other Florida friends were back in the sun, it was still nice to have something familiar here by my side.

"Wow, Bella, you look..." Carson said, struggling for the words.

"Less pregnant," I finished for him.

"Yeah," he muttered. "So, how did everything go? Well, I hope." We were walking towards the door now, Carson and Lauren towing their things behind them in their suitcases.

I held the door for them and we walked out into the rain. "It all went well, I suppose. I mean, there was pain, of course. But other than that, it went fairly well. Mason's a great baby."

"I bet he is just adorable!" Lauren squealed, her voice high and lovely as it drifted through the air and into my ears. We were half way across the lot now, going towards my truck, and as we walked I tried not to slip on the slick ground beneath me.

When we reached my truck, I helped Carson and Lauren to put their things into the backseat before getting into the driver's side and started the truck. It roared to life, like it usually did, and then idled at top volume. This didn't seem to bother them at the least; they just got in the truck normally and buckled up. It was silent until I pulled out of the lot, and started to drive.

"So, tell me," Carson began. I glanced at him from the rear-view mirror. His arm was draped around Laurens shoulders, and her head was on his shoulder. "How Forks been treating you?"

I grinned then focused my attention back on the road. "It's alright. I mean, it could be better. But I do like spending time with Charlie, and he loves spending time with Mason. So I can't really complain that much. But I do miss Florida and the sun..."

"The rain is just so... gloomy," Lauren added. She was looking out the window now, at the rain that was hitting off the glass. "Makes you feel kind of blue, you know?"

"It rubs off on you in a while," I told her. "But I do agree. The rain is very dull, but kind of soothing, if you look at it a certain way."

Carson and Lauren were to be staying in a little motel just down from the road from Charlie's house. Of course I had offered for them to stay at Charlie's, only if they could handle a screaming baby in the early hours of the morning, or having to be extremely quiet while Mason took naps. They decided to stay at the motel, just to not be in the way and get a good night's sleep. I totally agreed, saying that it was, most defiantly, the best choice for them. We would still be with each other mostly everyday of their week and a half stay, so not sleeping under the same roof really wasn't that big of a deal.

I had been in contact with everyone else from Florida via email or the phone. They were all sorry that they couldn't be there, but being only teenagers with no money, it was hard to find cash in a short period of time. I understood them completely, and told them that sometime, soon hopefully, we would be able to meet again. They seemed to like that answer well enough.

By the time we reached Charlie's it was nearly seven thirty in the evening. We first went to the motel where they would be staying and got them checked in, leaving their belongings in their room. When we got to the house, Charlie was at the table, eating saltines and peanut butter and when he saw us, he got up and walked over.

"Well, Bella," he said, one hand on my shoulder. "This must be your friends, right?"

I nodded, and then turned to face Carson and Lauren. "Dad, this is Carson and Lauren," I sad as I pointed to each one. "Guys, this is my dad, Charlie."

The all shook hands, and Charlie looked over each of them as he did to all my friends before turning to me and saying, "Mason is upstairs. He's been up there for about an hour, so he should be ready to wake up any moment now."

I smiled and leaned up to kiss his cheek. "Thanks dad." Then, to Carson and Lauren I said, "Come on, let's go."

To say the least, Lauren and Carson were head over heels for Mason. When they first saw him, wrapped up so tiny in his cot, both their eyes widened and grins appeared on their faces. I let them both hold Mason, as you would, and they both commented on how beautiful he was and how much he looked like me, which is exactly what I wanted to hear.

It was way after ten thirty by the time we were all done with Mason. I drove them to the motel and helped them unpack their things in a little pine dresser that came with the room. Then after stripping the bed of the sheets and bedspread, and putting on news ones, I left, leaving them alone again.

I decided to stop into the local food store to pick up some diapers and formula for Mason because we were getting low on whatever amount we had now. I made a mental note to pick up some bottled water, eggs, and diet Coke before getting out the truck and walking towards the entrance.

Inside wasn't busy at all. To my right there was another girl, much older though, looking through a stand of grapes, and straight ahead there was a man in his twenties looking at the selection of chocolate bars. I ignored them and walked straight to the baby isle where I was Alyssa and Madison standing there by the wipes. Alyssa looked deep in thought as she held up two kinds of baby wipes in front of Madison, who was in her cart. Madison just kicked one with her foot and Alyssa nodded and stuck it on the cart. She didn't even see me until I was only three feet away from her.

She put her hand to her heart in surprise and Madison gurgled. "Jesus," she muttered, letting out a sigh, "I didn't see you there."

"What are you doing here?" I asked her, turning my head to look at the wipes she was looking at before grabbing one and shoving it under my arm.

"I could ask you the same question," she said as she started to walk down the aisle before stopping just before the end and grabbing a pair of diapers. I did the same and grabbed some. "What are you doing here?"

"I just needed to get a few things for Mason," I told her, still walking. "And you?"

"Here for things for Madison and Michael. He'll be out of hospital in a few days."

"So he's doing well?" I asked as we turned the corner. There was the same woman who was looking at grapes now looking through a row of pregnancy tests. When she saw us, she just grabbed one quickly and headed in the opposite direction.

"Physically, yes. Emotionally, no," she told me.

I raised an eyebrow. "Is that so?" I asked, wondering. "Why is that?"

"Leslie is dead, and he blames himself. He missed her funeral, you know. Her parents came to me in such a wreck. I felt so bad, and so did he." She paused to draw in a breath. "The doctor's said that he is healing well physically. The bones that were broken all healed very well. He still has a few cuts and scratched and scars, but nothing bad. They would dismiss him today, but they want to watch him more intently for the next little while."

I nodded. "Send my best wishes," I said.

She smiled weakly. "I will."

I finished getting what I needed and got checked out. Alyssa told me she would drop by sometime, and I nodded, thrilled. Then I left and went out to my truck, just in time to see a familiar silver Volvo whizz down the road, suddenly reminding me of everything I had gone though.

I sighed deeply and crawled into the truck, leaning my head back and closing me eyes, letting everything, just for a moment, slip away.


A/N- Here is the first chapter to the sequel of Alone called Need. I hope you all like it! Please review!