Disclaimer: Angelflowers sneaks into Stephanie Meyer's Office and crosses to the locked cabinet marked 'Top Secret'. She takes out a professional lock pick and proceeds to pick the lock. She quietly opens the drawer, wincing as the drawers wheels squeak loudly. She stops and listens for any sounds of movement. There are none. She looks back into the cabinet drawer and finds to her delight a file marked 'Copyright: Twilight'. She squeals in excited fangirliness and reaches in to pick up the file. Before she can touch the sacred file a loud, high pitched wailing splits the still and silent night. Gasping in shock and surprise she withdraws her hand and slams the drawer shut. She quickly skedaddles out the window and is running down the drive to the parked getaway car. She gets and puts it in drive and peals out of there, the tyres squealing in protest. She makes it to the freeway where she can finally slow down. She sighs dejectedly and runs a hand through her her hair. "Dammit!" she says. "I STILL don't own it!"

Disclaimer 2: In case you didn't realise it from the above - I don't own Twilight or anything affiliated with Twilight or Stephanie Meyer. GRRR!

Chapter 6

It was week before Edward returned. A week, in which I began to feel as if my mission was completely pointless, if the vampire I was supposed to be finding a mate for, had gone AWOL. The rest of his family had remained silent in regards to my increasingly frantic questioning of his whereabouts, which began to rather resemble the Spanish Inquisition than casual queries. It was frustrating to say the least when they refused to give me answers, regarding me instead with open hostility and suspicion. Only little Alice was sympathetic to me and tried to reassure me that he was fine and would return soon.

Bella, on the other hand was even more anxious to see him than I. For what reason I couldn't imagine, as the last time they had met, he had not been at all welcoming towards her. She would glance at the table in the cafeteria where the Cullen's sat, her eyes sweeping over Edward's neglected seat and quickly divert her eyes shyly if they happened to make contact with one of the Cullen's. She would become nervous and apprehensive before our Biology classes and was withdrawn, only speaking when spoken to. To be honest all this teenage angst, melodrama and my own personal worries were driving me nuts!

It had got to the point that if he hadn't returned to Forks by the end of the week, I would try to persuade Alex to let me try to track him down via a locater spell. I drove home from school that Friday afternoon with a heavy heart and pulled into the drive. Just as I was about to turn into the garage, I saw someone leaning on the wall beside the garage door. I cut the engine and squinted through the windscreen, trying to work out who it was. As I looked, the person pushed off from the wall and came towards me in the rain. He came closer and I realised with a jolt of shock that it was Edward Cullen! His unmistakable bronze hair was wet with rainwater and he was wearing a grey jacket that dripped water. I stared at him for a second before getting out of the car and running over to him, not caring that I was getting wet. I stood as close to him as I dared and looked up into his face, running my eyes over every detail. I noted his eyes were a beautiful golden colour, but they were tinged with black. Perhaps he was thirsty? I wondered, taking a cautious step back.

"So. You're back." I noted wryly, squinting up at him. Edward nodded and then said, "Could we talk?" I regarded him for a second before nodding my head and leading the way to the house. I unlocked the door, my hand shaking slightly as I realised I had allowed myself to be left in a situation where I was alone with a vampire. And not just any vampire – one who I wasn't completely sure had his thirst under control. I sighed then and shook my head dejectedly, wondering how on earth I managed to put myself into these situations. I stood aside and allowed him to enter the room before me. He stepped into the room, glancing around and then turned to face me as I shut the door.

He stood there for a moment or two just looking at me, not saying a word. I began to fidget after a while, nervous under his scrutiny. Finally after what seemed an age he began to speak.

"I gather after your interrogations of my family, regarding my whereabouts this past week, that you wished to speak with me?" I bit my lip and nodded sheepishly. He sighed and then proceeded to sit himself down in a fluid, graceful movement onto the tan sofa. I followed suit in a slight daze. He looked at me expectantly. I looked back. After a few seconds of me gazing at him like an idiot, and Edward still looking at me, I realised he was waiting for me to speak. Feeling like a prize idiot, I blushed and dipped my head so my hair covered my eyes. When I had sufficiently composed myself, I looked up and began speaking.

"I'm sorry. I didn't mean for my questions to your family to sound as though they were interrogations." I apologised. "But as I'm sure you can understand, when you left I became rather anxious. Considering what I had learned about you that day in Biology and again later in the office, I had wondered if you had gone to seek peace." He looked at me unblinkingly. "Peace from what?" he asked. I sighed and ran a nervous hand through my hair. Should I tell him of what we suspect regarding Bella? I wondered silently to myself. He frowned slightly and then said, "What suspicions regarding Bella Swan?" I blinked in surprise. I hadn't realised I had spoken aloud. He shook his head. "You didn't." he said. What? I furrowed my brow, and looked at him confusedly. "I can read your mind." He said simply, as though commenting on the weather. I opened my mouth in surprise. "Oh." I said lamely whilst simultaneously freaking out in my head.

He can read minds?! Oh my God! He knows what I'm thinking! How does he know what I'm thinking? He knows everything! How am I going to keep stuff from him when he can read my mind? I thought frantically, my mind swirling chaotically. What the hell is going on here? I leapt to my feet and began pacing, thinking all the while. Edward sat quietly on sofa, allowing me to freak out in peace. Suddenly whirling on him, I stared at him forcefully. Can you hear me? I asked silently. He nodded his head. I gasped, my hand covering my mouth. I stared at him wide-eyed. So it's true then? "Yes." He answered me aloud this time. My God! I thought incredulously. Incredible. Can I hear your thoughts? He shook his head. "No. I only have the ability to hear, not to project." I frowned then, remembering something Alex had told me, about a telepathy spell, which allowed the caster to both hear and project thoughts onto certain people. I looked sharply at Edward wondering whether it would work on vampires. "You can certainly try." Edward told me. No. I thought. I couldn't. According to Alex, it's very advanced magic, only very experienced spell casters are able to do it. I sighed. But it would be wonderful if I could. "I'm not good enough yet." I said aloud. Edward smiled at me gently. "But you will be, if your protection spell was any indication of your powers." He assured me. You're just saying that. He chuckled. "No I'm not. We were all surprised by the strength of your spell. Especially me. You were able to maintain it mentally, whilst completely and utterly terrified of us." I wasn't terrified! I thought indignantly. "Yes you were. Anyway, it showed to me that you were mentally, as well as physically strong." I scoffed at that. "Physically strong? You must be joking. Look at me." I held my arms out and twirled around so that he could see all of me.

As I mentioned before, I was small and slight for my age of 20. I was not strong at all and was slim, but not unhealthily or unnaturally so. My grandmother used to often remark that if I turned sideways I would disappear. Edward smirked at the thoughts running through my mind. I glared at him. Oh, do shut up! I thought huffily at him. He covered a smirk with his hand in an entirely human gesture and then said, "I merely meant that you were strong enough to endure the mental, as well as physical strain the spell was producing upon your body." Oh. I felt guilty then for snapping at him and opened my mouth to apologise. He shook his head, a slight smile on his face and said "Forgiven." I closed my mouth all the while thinking, that's going to get annoying, realising then that this thought would be a constant refrain during my relationship with Edward. Of course, as my thoughts turned to my relationship with Edward, so they turned back to Bella and the situation there. "Ah, yes. Bella. What were you trying to tell me before?" Edward asked. I sighed and sat back down, running a nervous hand through my hair. "Well, I realised after we saw you in the office that her scent affects you. Of course I didn't know why it did at the time and so it wasn't until I returned here and spoke with Alex-" "Your brother?" he interrupted. I bit my lip and looked down at my hands resting in my lap. I was twirling the ring on my finger around and around the finger. Not my brother. I thought. He was the one who came to me in London. Edward inhaled sharply. "Say no more. It was a story you told to the people of Forks to blend in." I looked up then, confusion in my eyes. "Yes. How did you know?" He pointed to himself in explanation. I looked confusedly at him for a second or two before realisation hit me. "You've told the same story?" Of course! Now the story about the doctor and his wife and their adopted children, Jessica had told me the week before made more sense. It wasn't a family that had moved to Forks and integrated themselves into human society, it was a coven. It was just a cover up story, similar to that of Alex's, and mine, that we had invented in order for me to enrol at the High School undercover. I was amazed that I hadn't reached this conclusion sooner. Of course I had known there was coven of vampires in Forks and Alex had told me that they considered themselves a family, but I hadn't imagined that they would use that as a cover story and would intermingle so freely with humans. The thought simply hadn't crossed my mind before. I marvelled at how long it had taken me to realise such a simple fact.

"Humans never really look too far beyond the obvious. Modern movies, TV shows and novels, have really allowed the public to become so absorbed by the myth of my kind, that they would never imagine that we could move among them freely and even hold such positions in society." Edward explained. Of course. I nodded, remembering my own preconceived notions of what the vampires of Forks would be like, in that they would have fangs, skulk about at night, burn in direct sunlight and generally avoid human contact as they fed upon animals, rather than my kind, in correlation with traditional vampire canon.

He nodded and then said, "But returning to the subject of Bella Swan?" "Yes." I chuckled. "We did get off course, didn't we?" He smiled tightly and said, "Yes, we did. If you please?" "Right. Of course. Sorry." I took a moment then to compose myself and then continued. "I spoke with Alex, and we determined that the reason you were so drawn to Bella's scent, was not only because you desired it, but you desired her." He frowned at my explanation. "What do you mean?" I took a breath and said, "We believe that she is your la tua cantante." Edward sat back in the seat and closed his eyes as if in pain. "Blood singer." He whispered quietly. I nodded even though he couldn't see me. "You are, of course, aware of what this may mean?" I asked him hesitantly. He opened his eyes and glared at me fiercely. I recoiled at the look in eyes – the black had grown even more prominent, the amber colour almost disappearing. Again I felt fear for my safety, wondering again at the wisdom of allowing myself to be alone with him. "You cannot be serious!" he growled at me. I whimpered. He sprang from the sofa so quickly, that it made me whimper again in fear, not knowing what he would do next. He paced quickly, running agitated hands through his hair, his eyes becoming wilder as he paced. I stayed where I was, too scared of him and tried not to make any sudden moves, trembling in fear. "A child!" he said in anguish, pulling at his hair. "A mere human child! No! This cannot be! No! I will not let it be!" Suddenly whirling on me, he strode forward purposefully. I shrieked in fear and began chanting the words of the protection spell. "Don't be ridiculous!" he spat. "I'm not going to hurt you!" This did nothing to ease my fear as he advanced. I found myself wishing that Alex had taught me the knock-back and banishing spells already. "For goodness' sake, woman, I'm not going to hurt you! Cease your infernal spell!" He growled at me. I stopped chanting with a whimper and sat there looking at him, shaking, tears running down my face. "That's better. Now tell me. This cannot be true! A human? A child? My mate? No!" I wiped my face of tears and nodded silently, not trusting myself to speak without my voice wavering. It may be true, Edward. She is your La Tua Cantante. You know as well as I do how often a vampire's mate is a product of this. He gasped. "No! I cannot let it be true!" He stared at me, becoming more agitated. I sniffled. Why not? "I am a monster, Amy!" No! "Yes! How can this be true? How can she be my mate?" I cannot answer that Edward. Perhaps this is what the Powers desire. Perhaps on some small level you desire it as well. After all you picked her yourself. "How can you say that Amy? I, monster, hideous demon that I am, desire a human? A child at that?" he spat at me. Oh, Edward, do stop calling her a child. She is not that much younger than me. Besides, you're not a 'monster' or a 'hideous demon'. You are quite attractive you know. He glared at me in exasperation. "That is not the point. I am supposed to be attractive to my prey." I gasped in shock. She is not your prey! You hunt animals remember? He nodded. You're…not going to hunt her are you? I asked hesitantly. "Of course not!" he said, disgust etching his features at my suggestion. "The point is, I don't have a soul. How can she, beautiful, innocent child that she is, want me, a soulless thing?" I smiled broadly. "Aha! You said she was beautiful! You do like her!" I pointed at him triumphantly. He rolled his eyes. "I also said she was innocent and a child!"

It was my turn to glare at him. "She is not a child! She's seventeen years old, for God's sake. She's old enough to make her own decisions." He mused for a second on that. "Decisions…" He murmured thoughtfully. "Yes, decisions. Let her make them on her own. And you're not a monster. And the fact that you're making the decision not to eat her and the love that you share with your family just proves that you're not a soulless 'thing'." I made quotation marks in the air with my fingers on the last word. "If you were soulless, you'd be completely unable to express that love or make a decision like this. You'd take joy in hunting and killing my kind, without fear or the guilt on your conscience." He smiled tightly, the smile not reaching his eyes. I could see he didn't believe me. I groaned, able to see that it would take a while to convince him. "Besides Edward, we don't know if she is your mate for sure. She could just be your La Tua Cantante. I think we're pulling the trigger here before we've even put the bullet in. We need to be sure so we don't do anything rash. Go home. Think it over. Sleep on it-" He interrupted me again. "I don't sleep." I blinked in surprise and opened my mouth to say something about that. Deciding not to say anything, I chose to ignore that comment and continued what I had been saying before he had interrupted. "Well, whatever. The point is, just to think about everything I've told you. Discuss it with your family then come to a rational decision and then we'll decide how to proceed from there." He sighed and nodded, tearing his eyes away from me and running a hand through his hair. "Yes, you're right." I smiled. "Of course I am." He laughed and looked back at me. I noticed that the black colour in his eyes had receded somewhat. "You know, you're quite intelligent and wise for your years." He said, with a slight chuckle. "I know. Just don't go telling every one, it'll ruin my street cred!" I joked. He laughed loudly at that and looked affectionately at me. "I think I'm going to like having you around. You're funny." I smiled. "Thank-you." He smiled back at me and then said, "No, thank-you." Putting emphasis on the last word. I blushed and said, "Don't thank me yet. Thank me when we've got this mess sorted out." He nodded and looked out of the window at the darkening sky.

"I guess, that this is my cue to take my leave of you." He said. I sighed. "I guess so." I said looking at the sky also. "Alex will be home soon." "Of course." He said. I looked out of the window. "Where's your car? Did you drive here?" I asked looking for a car other than my own Mini, and finding none. "No I didn't drive. I ran." I gaped at him for a second. "You ran?" He nodded. "We don't live that far away from here." Oh. "Well, it was nice talking to you, Amy." He held out a hand for me to shake. "Thank-you for the information." I shook my head. "Not at all." I took his offered hand and shook it. I then saw him to the door. He was halfway down the garden path when I called out to him. "Edward!" He stopped and spun around to face me. "You will think about what I said, won't you?" I asked uncertainly. He smiled and nodded. "Sure, Amy." I smiled then in relief. Good. So I'll see you in school on Monday then? I asked. "Yes." I smiled then. Good. "Say hi to your family for me."

"I will." He turned around as I waved goodbye. I watched him reach the trees to the left of the property and dart quickly into them and then he disappeared from sight. I made it. I survived time alone with a vampire. And I didn't get eaten! I thought happily. I sighed then in relief and closed the door.