A/N I am not Stephenie Meyer; I do not own Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse or Breaking Dawn. No copyright infringement intended.
Chapter 1: Escape
"Where do you think you're going?" Jake's unexpected voice in her ear made Nessie gasp with surprise. Where did he come from?
"I'm going hunting." She tried to sound casual so he wouldn't guess that she actually planned to leave the compound. "Sure, sure, right after we go back to the tree-house and tell your old lady where we're going." Jacob grinned at her, obviously teasing.
"No Jake, I want to go by myself." She knew it was useless, but she had to try. "If you don't let me go, I'll tell mom you called her an old lady again."
Jake laughed out loud so Nessie scampered up his huge body to put her hands over his mouth. "Shush Jacob! They'll hear you!" She could feel the muscles of his face twitch under her hands as he tried not to laugh. He snorted, making her giggle.
"What's so funny, Jake?"
"You looked so much like a little monkey just now." Nessie wiggled around to get a better look at his face, digging her bare feet into the muscles covering his ribs. "Hey Nessie, that tickles!"
"Ha! Better you than me, Dog Boy!"
"Dog Boy?" Jake chuckled. "You've been hanging out with Rosalie too much. What am I gonna do with you?"
Jake continued to laugh as he pulled her off his body, grabbed her feet, and held her upside down with one hand. Nessie caught the hem of her shirt before it could slide up past her belly and tucked it into her shorts. Using her stomach muscles, she pulled her body into a pike and whipped open like a gymnast.
Jake anticipated her move and tossed her into the air. Nessie somersaulted a couple of times and landed several yards closer to the gate, crouched and ready to run.
Jake quit laughing and puffed out his cheeks as he exhaled. "Aw Nessie, you know you can't go outside alone, and don't tell me you were going to hunt inside the compound, we both know there's nothing left in here you actually want."
He was right, of course. There had only been one carnivore trapped within the compound the day they finished the fence. She hated the taste of herbivores! Yuck! The meat eaters were so much better. Not as good as Jake's blood, though.
Oh no, why did I have to think about Jake's blood? Nessie's pupils dilated, her nostrils flared, and her mouth filled with saliva.
She wasn't supposed to bite Jake anymore. What a stupid rule! She never lost control with Jake, never took more than a few little sips, and Jake didn't mind. In fact he seemed to enjoy it as much as she did. So what was the problem? Geez!
As if he were reading her mind, Jake closed the distance between them in three strides and scooped her up, holding her like a baby. With his eyebrows raised and a slight smile curving the corners of his mouth, he offered her his wrist. "Are you really thirsty again so soon? Or do you just enjoy being naughty?"
It was hard to ignore the scent of his blood pulsing right under her nose. She pushed his arm away, before her resolve weakened. I'm getting out of here tonight!
"You go by yourself all the time!" She squirmed around until she could wrap her legs around his waist and balled her hands into fists. She thumped him on the chest to help make her point.
"You were going to go by yourself tonight, weren't you? Why can't I have any 'alone time'? Everyone else gets to go out by themselves!"
Nessie felt the frustration drain away with each ineffective thump of her fists. Jake snuggled her into his hard warm chest, his heart beat resonating against her. It was just a whisper when she grumbled into the side of his neck, "or hide behind locked doors all night."
Jake's body shook as he tried not to laugh. He slid his hands down to her waist, leaning away from her and looked directly into her eyes.
"How about we go together and I'll be so sneaky, you won't even know I'm there. I did sneak up on you tonight, didn't I?"
She growled quietly in frustration and muttered, "Damn it to hell!" She could tell Jake was trying not to laugh again.
"Are you laughing at me, Jacob Black? Would you rather I adopt some of your vocabulary? Let's see... 'Jake's word for the day' is..."
Jake abruptly clamped his hand over her mouth. The look on his face was comical, but left no room for doubt—this conversation was over.
"Alright, fine." Nessie sighed and jumped out of Jake's arms. She held his hand while she waited for him to punch in the code for the alarm system.
Nessie felt a twinge of guilt for trying to sneak out alone. She knew the reason they had to live here, completely isolated from the rest of the world. They had to hide her from Aro.
She wasn't supposed to know about it, but she overheard enough snippets of conversation to figure out that Aro was experimenting on vampire-human hybrids. She shivered involuntarily as she thought of the ancient vampire.
"So kiddo, how did you manage to sneak out with out your dad catching you?"
She was actually quite proud of herself. "I meditated and pretended I was having a dream."
"Seriously? That actually worked?" The surprised look on Jake's face was a little insulting.
"Well, duh. I'm here aren't I?" She stuck her chin in the air and tossed her curls over her shoulder imitating Rosalie's favorite pose. Jake didn't seem to notice, so she dropped the attitude.
"What did you do exactly? Go into a trance or something?"
"Yeah, I've been practicing for awhile." Nessie couldn't keep the excitement and pride out of her voice. "I did a little sleep walking to test it out and no one noticed. I thought what the heck; I might as well do something fun."
"Is that why you're so hell-bent on sneaking out—all alone into the jungle, at night, no one knowing where you are and no one to protect you—for fun?" Ah-oh, it sounded like Jake was slipping into parental mode. She hated it when he did that.
"I don't know Jake, I just feel so tense all the time lately. Hunting makes me feel better. Besides, I really am thirsty." She turned on the charm, pushing her lower lip out just a bit, and peeked at him from under her lashes. She learned that trick from Alice.
Jake shook his head and grinned. "Then what are we waiting for? Let's go!"
Nessie took off into the jungle at top speed, the thrill of the hunt pulsing in her veins. The slipstream she created as she ran lifted the heavy hair from her damp neck and back, it tugged at her curls, stretching them out in waves behind her.
She wanted blood… and she wanted the blood of a predator. She didn't find it. The only scent she found even remotely appetizing was several days old.
Nessie gave up and began tracking one of the many feral pig trails. They were even more plentiful than the deer back in Washington. It didn't take her long to find, kill and drain one. Her thirst was satisfied, but not her craving.
She sat on the ground and began picking twigs, leaves, and an occasional bug out of her tangled hair. She had to get cleaned up before Rose and Alice could see her. They already called her "wild child" and complained constantly about her appearance.
Nessie had traded dresses and bows for t-shirts and cutoffs the day she won her emancipation from the fashion police. It was a hard fought battle. Jake, Edward, Bella and Nessie insisted she was old enough to make her own decisions about what to wear. Rose and Alice did not agree.
Nessie usually wore her hair in a long braid down her back. Tonight she had let it fly freely as she ran through the jungle, enjoying the feeling. She would pay for that fleeting pleasure with hours of untangling mats. She would ask Jake to help her; he was a lot more patient than anyone else in the family was was when it came to brushing and combing her hair.
She watched Jake quickly clean and field dress the pig. He wiped the blade of his knife on the ground before putting it away. When he looked up, he caught her staring at him, but he didn't seem to mind. He stood up, expanding his chest as he stretched and sighed. "Mm, roast pig!"
"That's just gross, Jake!"
"To each his own, Nessie." Jake laughed and started humming to himself as he gathered material for a fire.
Rocking back and forth hugging her knees, Nessie watched Jake work. She knew every plane and angle of his face by touch as well as sight. When the small pile of kindling finally started to smoke, Jake leaned in close with pursed lips and blew gently.
I'll bet that's how he looks when he kisses someone. Nessie traced her lower lip slowly with her fingertips. I wonder what it feels like to be kissed like that?
The flame gradually increased and ignited the larger twigs and sticks and eventually, a couple of small logs. The campfire threw alternating patterns of light and shadow across Jake's body. Nessie's eyes grew heavy, but she continued to study Jake as he tended the fire and prepared his meal.
"Jake?" Her voice sounded tired and a little dreamy even to her own ears.
He stopped immediately and looked up at her, his dark brown eyes sparkling with reflected light from the fire.
"Your eyes are so pretty, Jacob." His smile lit up his whole face.Nessie felt her cheeks blush and hoped Jake hadn't noticed.
"Thank you Nessie, so are yours. Are you getting tired sweetheart?"
"No, not really." The huge yawn that escaped her made them both laugh. Jake stood up and kicked dirt over the fire, extinguishing it immediately.
"Jake! Why did you do that? It took you so long to get it started and you haven't even cooked your pig yet!"
"Well, I'm a little tired too and we need to get back before someone notices you're missing. Have you thought about how you are going to sneak back in?"
"The same way I got out, meditation."
"How about tomorrow? Are you going meditate all day?"
"Um, I hadn't really thought about it… Crap."
"I'll make you a deal Nessie, if you promise to never sneak out alone; I'll tell you how I hide my thoughts from Edward."
"Does that mean you'll sneak out with me?"
"Maybe. Do I have your word?"
"Yes, Jacob." Nessie quickly agreed. She could manipulate Jake's "maybe" into "Sure, sure," with very little effort.
Nessie was having a dreadfully bad day. Jake, Alice and Jasper were off on another pointless reconnaissance mission. When would they realize they were never going to find Nahuel, or his sisters?
None of her usual pastimes could hold her attention for more than a few minutes. She thought about working on the watercolor she started last week, but was afraid in her present mood she would only ruin it. Jacob, I need you!
"Hey Little Spider, where are you?
Crap! Emmett. Why can't he just leave me alone?
"Come out, come out where ever you are," he called in an irritating singsong voice. "I wanna see how long I can tickle you before you pee your pants."
Nessie snarled at him and yelled, "Bite me!" before ducking into her room and slamming the door. She ground her teeth and slid down the wall. It hurt when her butt hit the floor and jarred every joint in her body.
The growing pains were terrible today. Worse than the day all her permanent teeth came through. When would it end? When would she be done growing? The pain, the confinement, Jake's absence, Emmett's idiotic teasing: all of it was just too much to bear!
Nessie felt her frustration take on a life of its own in the space around her. The air was heavy and oppressive making it hard to breathe. She could feel the room closing in on her as she started to hyperventilate.
When she couldn't stand it any longer, she climbed out her window and began to scurry down the branches. As she dropped to the ground from the lowest branch, Emmett appeared out of nowhere, grabbed her around the waist and started tickling her.
"Ha! I got you at last, Little Spider!" She could feel her self-control slipping. "You wanna know why I call you little spider?"
She was going to lose her temper big time if he didn't stop it. "Not really," she growled through clenched teeth, feeling the rage build as he continued to tickle her.
"It's because your arms and legs are so long you look like a four legged spider."
That's all it took. She lost control completely. She actually saw red, snarled at him from deep in her belly and bit him.
A/N A special thank you to BellaFlan for her professional editing services. The quantum leap in the quality of this story is a direct result of her meticulous line editing and creative suggestions. Be sure to check her profile for some amazing fanfiction.
www [dot] fanfiction [dot] net/u/2092771/