Oh, guys I'm sooooo sorry about the delay for the last chapter! I'm really sorry, so I'm gonna make this chapter longer =]

Alternate Ending Part III

Edward's eyes starred into mine, boring holes through my chocolate iris's. I could practically feel the intensity and tension in the air as he took one look around and realized he was sitting on my bed, practically inches away from my face. He moved away, startled. I was surprised. It seemed natural enough for me. Maybe he was worried I couldn't remember that he might have done that often and was trying not to scare me. It was strange, for two seconds it seemed that we both forgot what he had just said and we just looked at each other, really looked. I pondered over the exact color of his eyes. Were they gold or were they more of a butterscotch color? They were ocher, I suddenly thought. That's a perfect word. Not as perfect as Edward himself. His pale white face was strained, deciphering what he must say next. What we both knew was the inevitable.

"How do you know?" I said, breaking the silence with a voice I didn't seem to recognize.

"Alice saw it." his mouth twitched at the sides, but not to form a smile. "And we received a letter."

My eyes widened. "A letter?"

"Yes. I guess they wanted us to be warned beforehand." Edward laughed a grim chuckle, his eyes not softening from the golden metal they had become. I suddenly ached to touch him, to soothe him in some way. But I knew that would just make it harder.

"What do you want me to do, Edward?" His eyes winced when I spoke his name and I bit my tongue for my use of familiarity I did not know.

The question was for his benefit only. I had made up my mind, I was just asking to know his opinion. To know his options. He paused a moment and then reached for the window.

"I thought I could take you back to the house. Talk it over with the whole family."

I glanced over at the clock. It was only ten after eight at night. Dee and Greg would still be awake, most likely. The boys would be in bed, though. I thought quickly and the jumped out of the bed.

"Dee and Greg trust you enough to not sneak out." Edward focused his eyes on the floor, his voice a mere whisper. "They won't notice that you're gone. Charlie would've---" he stopped himself suddenly and I starred at him. He continued one without acknowledging my stare or the question behind it. "I don't know when you'll be back."

"Okay. Let me get dressed." I paused. "Do you want me to crawl out of the window? Because I'm pretty sure I'll hurt myself." I mentally prepared myself for the pain I would undoubtedly feel when I fell from a two-story window. Knowing my luck, I would probably fall on the hardest place on the ground.

Edward's eyes seemed to grow softer and his arms instinctively moved toward me. They dropped as he said, "I'll have to carry you."

I nodded and retreated to the bathroom down the hall with some random piece of clothing I had picked from my closet. I snuck down the hallway, careful to not make any sound as I went by Connor's room, who was known for being a light sleeper. The sound of the TV downstairs proved my theory that indeed Greg and Dee were still awake. In the light of the bathroom, I saw what I had picked from my closet haphazardly. It was the blue dress that Dee had helped me pick out. I loved that dress and it seemed fitting for where I was about to go, what with all the designer-clad people I would be with.

The tights I had meant for the dress had to be forgone, though, because I knew we were in hurry. I washed my face, brushed my teeth and tried to do what I could with my hair, but I gave up after the brushing.

I walked back into my room to see Edward once again reading my apple covered journal. His eyes didn't glance up until I was in full view. Then, only then did I see the widening of the eyes and hear the sharp intake of unneeded breath. I looked down at my dress, thinking maybe it was messed up or something, but nothing was wrong. It looked exactly the same as it had when I tried it on. Fitting my body in ways I never knew were possible while still leaving a lot up to the imagination.

"That color blue looks lovely with your skin."

The voice that courageously escaped from my lost memory was pretty unmistakable, especially when it uttered, "You look beautiful," from across the room.

I blushed and felt my heart do a loop inside my already hammering chest. The dress started to feel scratchy all of the sudden. I walked toward him and waited for what to do.

Edward carefully took one long, white finger and traced my jaw line, leaving the place tingly. I shivered, and unexpectedly reached out and brushed back a piece of his perfect bronze hair. It felt like it was the thing I would've done if…if I knew what I was doing. His hand reached and grabbed mine from his hair ever so gently, only to wrap it around his stone cold neck and make me jump into his arms. It was almost like being carried like Alice, but there was a tenderness here that hadn't existed in Alice's hold. I ducked my head as he crouched on the ledge of the window.

We were on the ground before I could blink. I felt dizzy and lightheaded, almost like motion sickness. I stayed wrapped in Edward's chest as he carried me to the waiting Volvo. Yeah, he would drive the Volvo. He set me down and opened the door, closing it as I settled myself in on the leather interior. He was at his door before I could even think of putting my seat belt on. As Edward turned on the ignition, I glanced into the CD case that had been thrown into the glove compartment. I recognized most of the artists and sighed when I came to a Dubussy album. I had just been listening to it, I thought sadly.

I felt Edward's eyes on me and felt his cold hands gently pull the CD from me and push it into the player. Our song, I thought, as Clair de Lune hummed over the speakers.

I thought of something just then. "Did you receive the letter before or after Alice's vision?"

"Before. She's been on the lookout, and the letter came right afterwards." He paused and glanced out at the surrounding trees. "They'll be here in three days."

"Days?" I choked out. I wondered why I was surprised. Maybe I thought they would be here in weeks. My eyes started filling up with tears of sorrow.

"Yes. They're leaving in a couple of hours."

"How did you get the letter so quickly?"

"The Volturi make up their mind quickly, Bella, when it comes to this kind of thing." Edward said grimly, his free hand now inches from my quivering one.

The silence seemed suitable, and I gave up with small talk. It made me depressed that I couldn't talk freely without my voice breaking. Maybe Alice would see where my mind was wandering to, and would alert the others. I didn't want to tell them, especially not Edward. Was I just meant to bring pain to others? Some people are put on earth to cure diseases or be great and victorious in battles. Or those who are just there on earth, waiting for the one who will make them complete. I had been that person once. Now I was just existing to be a burden and thorn to the beautiful roses I barely knew.

Edward drove alarmingly fast, and we made it to the house in less than ten minutes. The massive garage was empty, with only Esme standing in the doorway. She was pacing as Edward parked the car, and came hurrying the passenger seat to hug me as I emerged. Her voice was muffled as she whispered. "Oh, Bella, I'm so sorry.""Why are you sorry? This is my fault." I said, confused.

"It's not your fault that Charlie sent you to this place so you could heal." Esme said. "Carlisle called him. We thought it would be best to get every possible piece of information from all him."

The door closed and I looked around to see Edward emerging. In his hand, he carried his cell phone, which was glued to his ear. He was speaking very quickly. I discerned what I could.

"Tell Peter we need him as soon as possible, Jasper. Forget the past for now." the phone closed with a snap as his voice cut off.

Edward turned to cautiously grab my arm and lead me to the living room where we seated on the leather couch. Esme continued pacing.

My heart was beating so fast, it was getting hard to breathe. Edward felt my body constrict and pulled me tightly into an embrace. I continued breathing in gasps, but my hands found his and I felt calmer as he rocked me in his arms like I was a baby. In that moment, everything disappeared.

The only thing I was aware of was Edward. His stone cold arms wrapped around my quivering frame; the way my breathing seemed to make his eyes melt to a beautiful molten gold. A long white finger stroked my face and my hands took on a life of their own. I turned so that I was still sitting on Edward's lap, but my arms wrapped themselves around his neck, and I slowly brought his face toward mine. My eyes closed, and my lips suddenly froze, it seemed, as his crushed into mine. I wasn't breathing, but that didn't matter. All that mattered was that I was with the man I loved and everything was going to be ok.

But it wasn't, I thought, as a shrill ring ended my second-long ecstasy. I felt Edward's lips turn to the sound that emanated from Esme's cell phone. I had forgotten she was there, lost in that one moment. My head turned to the sound as well.

Esme's hands fumbled with the phone, opening it cautiously. "Carlisle." she said.

I heard a low voice conversing on the other end, but couldn't understand anything. Edward apparently did, and I was pleased when his body relaxed the stiff position it had adopted when the phone rang. It must be good news. As good as any in this situation would permit, that is.

Edward spoke while Esme was still on the phone. "They're coming home, and then we can talk."

"Where are they?" I didn't think of the others when I came.

"In Canada, somewhere, hunting." he clarified.

Hunting, I thought, bringing me back to the fact that my stomach wasn't feeling so good.

I looked at Edward. "Do you have a bathroom?" Please, dear God, let the vampires have a bathroom.

"Yes, upstairs, third room on the left." He pointed, though it wasn't needed, since the stairway was clearly the focal point of the house. I disentangled myself and sidestepped Esme's pacing to head up the staircase. Sadly, as I thought I would, I let my imagination get the better of me and I peeked in each room that I passed. The first didn't have a bed, neither did the second, and both seemed to be void of any life. The rugs didn't look stepped on, the shelves empty. The third room was bare, except for a long, leather couch with a couple pillows. That couch drew me in, with a familiarity I couldn't pinpoint but that filled me with comfort. I trailed my hand over the leather and buried my face in the pillows that smelled like him. That smelled like my Edward.

Then I lost it. Before I knew it, I was a heap on the sofa, crying my eyes out over things I couldn't control. That was how Edward found me, curled up in a ball of sadness so intense it threatened to consume me.