AN: Beta'd by lisa89. Carlisle and Edward's POV's written by me, and Bella's written by the talented Emerald_Rosalie. Enjoy.
The Taste of Sin
Chapter One – Blood on Her Hands
Carlisle- Chicago 1997
Carlisle- Chicago 1997
It was a balmy day in Chicago, which was highly unusual this time of year. Esme was outside on the balcony, talking to our daughter Alice. Her mate and husband Jasper had just left to hunt with our other son Emmett.
Emmett was growing increasingly irritable; it had been a while since we had gone hunting in the dense forests of Canada. As much as I wanted to join my sons today, I had a prior obligation.
I was waiting for a phone call from my close friend Charles Swan, who had been a companion of mine in the last century and a half.
I had wandered this world alone for quite some time before I had found companionship with Charles. We had met in the forests that surrounded the Olympic Peninsula over one hundred and fifty years ago.
We had both been hunting for animals in the same area. I had never met anyone before him who shared my preference in blood. So, it had been quite a shock to find him on the forest floor, hovering over the dead corpse of a mountain lion.
Unfortunately, at the time, he had found me a threat and tried to defend his meal. Luckily, I had been able to convince him that I was no more a threat to him than I was to a human.
He'd laughed at that, and we'd been friends ever since. He dropped by from time to time, never longer than a few months. He was never one to show emotions, and his gift had always made him wary. He feared if another found out about his talent, he would be sought out by the Volturi.
I, of course, had been able to figure out his gift the very first time I'd met him. He could mask his scent. He could shield his scent from anyone and use that shield to protect others. He was untraceable. To someone like Aro, he would be more than worthy to add to his collection of talented guards. With Charles, he would be able to send anyone against his enemies completely undetected. This was why Charles remained a nomad, despite my asking him to remain with me.
Over the years, I had sought out others for companionship, but my lack of appetite for human blood always made others of our kind give a wide berth around me.
After nearly two centuries, I had come upon a dying human boy in 1918 and changed him after his mother had begged me to save his life. I'd never forgotten Elizabeth Masen's dying wish, and I tried to protect him as much as I possibly could.
It had been a terrible ordeal to watch another suffer through the pain caused by the change. Edward had been gifted from the moment he'd awoken after his heart had drummed its last beat. He'd answered a question in my thoughts before I'd been able to utter the words from my lips.
Edward had remained with me for ten years, seemingly happy with our bond as father and son. But after I'd found the love of my existence, Esme, his distance had become more pronounced. At the time, I'd felt he'd seemed me to be uncomfortable with the level of intimacy that Esme and I had shared.
I had done what I'd thought was best.
I'd wanted to find him someone that could mean to him what Esme meant to me. That was then I discovered the broken body of a young socialite, Rosalie Hale. Edward had been instantly disinterested in her.
In fact, he had been more than angry that I'd chosen to make her one of us, for not comprehending the enormity of the mistake I had made. Her death and her last human memories would be the horrendous things that had been done to her – memories that would remain with her for eternity.
Fortunately for Rosalie, she'd found her mate less than two years later – Emmett. She had been hunting and managed to kill the bear that had mauled him, and she'd brought him straight to me.
She had never strayed from our diet, but was unsure if she'd be able to handle changing Emmett on her own.
Edward had tried to stay with us, but with two couples in our shared home, he had become more adamant on leaving the house for days at a time.
One day, after going out to hunt, he had come through the door with shocking crimson eyes. He claimed that a vile human had been attempting to rape a young woman in an alley. After seeing firsthand through Rosalie's memories the horror of what a woman felt like in that situation, he had made quick haste and drained him before his body hit the ground.
He had killed three humans that day. He'd left, claiming that with his ability, he would pass over the innocent and kill those humans that were just as monstrous as he was.
He had yet to come home.
He called, wrote from time to time and occasionally dropped by. It was never more than a day. He'd met the newest members of our family Alice and Jasper, and he'd instantly bonded with Jasper after he'd told him of his experiences with the thirst for human blood. He'd even managed to meet Charles a few times.
Edward seemed frightened of Charles, because his ability didn't seem to work on him. There were times where he'd catch particularly powerful thoughts, but even then they were always garbled or muted.
So, with a heavy heart, I knew that Charles would call today. He knew how much Edward meant to our family, because today was his ninetieth birthday.
I was waiting in my study, reading over a new article on the advancement of laser eye surgery, when my telephone rang.
"Hello, old friend," I said, amused for a moment, until I heard the heavy breathing on the other end. "Charles?" I asked curiously.
"Carlisle! Oh, I got through. My friend," Charles said his voice barely audible, "I need your help."
To say that I was shocked at this declaration would be an understatement. In our entire friendship, he had never asked anything of me.
"Anything," I said, curiosity getting the best of me.
"I met someone," he said quietly.
"That's wonderful, Charles."
"What do you need from me, Charles?"
I heard a heavy sigh before he uttered his next statement. "She wants me to change her."
"I take it that this is something you do not wish to do?"
"No, I want to be with her forever. That is not an issue. The issue is that I don't know if I can change her myself."
I knew for a fact that Charles himself had never witnessed another through their change.
"You wish to bring her to me so that I may offer assistance, seeing as you've chosen not to live without her?"
"In a way, yes. I would like to try, but I want to be watched and stopped if the need should arise. With your sons, I'm sure if the worst came to pass, they would be able to stop me before I killed her."
I understood his reluctance. From what Charles had confessed, he had only taken very few lives since his change. He hadn't tasted human blood in centuries.
"That can be arranged, Charles. Just give me time to set up a place deep in the wilderness of Alaska, and we will meet you there."
Charles let out breath of relief. "Thank you, Carlisle."
"Now tell me, old friend. How did you fall in love with a human?"
Charles's laughter followed, a sound I hadn't heard tumble from his lips in decades.
My family and I were saying our goodbyes to the Denali Clan; my sons had just finished arrangements for cabins deep in the wilderness of the Alaskan landscape.
Charles was meeting us with his new wife Renee shortly. There was a weather front closing in on our positions, and I knew the trek would be hard for a human. Charles had failed to make the initial phone call last week, but I was hoping that everything was fine. If he was detained with his wife, then surely I understood.
I wanted to ask a few questions on the dynamic of his relations with the human. Never had I ever heard of such a thing occurring.
A vampire and a human being intimate. The idea was simply illogical. With a simple twist of his finger, he could kill her.
I worried for my friend. His lack of communication since his call in June left me wary. Jasper was the first to arrive at the cabin and leapt over the small cabin in amusement.
"Carlisle, I would never picture you, a man of your tastes, to live in such a small home," he teased, performing a flip before landing on the other side.
"Well, considering that we used this place to harbor newborns, I always found building a large home useless." This was not my first time here. I had brought Edward, Esme, Rosalie and Emmett all here before.
Jasper cocked his eyebrow in question, looking at Emmett and then laughing. "Let me guess, the house never manages to stay standing."
I laughed, shaking my head. "Edward demolished a small cabin I built in less than twelve hours."
"I did it in three!" Emmett sang as he sailed over the cabin.
The rest of my family arrived shortly afterward. There were a total of four cabins, all within a few thousand feet of one another. We all chose our lodgings and settled in for the evening.
The storm continued to blow and howl all around us; Emmett was currently standing outside, yelling at the night sky, "Is that all you've got?" His fist was high in the air as he roared at the darkened clouds.
He was an immobile pillar in a blizzard, a naked pillar. Rosalie had kicked him out again.
We had been here for three days, and Charles had not arrived. Our family was growing steadily worried. It was not like him to be late for anything, much less something as important as this.
Another day had passed, and I knew something must be terribly wrong. The sky was dark and threatening overhead. We all separated for the remainder of the evening after our last hunt. Well into the night, Alice and Jasper appeared suddenly.
"He's coming," Alice said, her face etched with sadness.
I looked upon my son Jasper, who just shrugged his shoulders and shook his head, wrapping his arms around his wife.
Emmett and Rosalie appeared within seconds, both in states of disheveled undress. I shook my head at them, and we just waited.
An hour passed when suddenly Jasper was on his feet, his nose flaring. "I'm leaving." He turned to Alice and kissed her lightly before leaving out the back door.
"What is wrong with Jasper?" I asked, looking at my daughter.
"There is blood," Alice whispered. I looked at her for confirmation, and she nodded. I went to the door and sniffed the air around me. Human blood, and lots of it. I ran in the direction that the scent carried me.
Alice, Rosalie, Esme and Emmett followed behind me. There was a small clearing, where I could clearly hear the cries of a dying man.
Charles was there, covered in blood, carrying a pale human body in his arms as he sobbed. The crimson of the blood looked almost black against the purity of the Alaskan snow. I took a tentative step toward him, and he looked up at me.
His entire essence was gone. Before me was a broken vampire, no longer capable of reason. Then I heard it.
A cry. A cry from a small child.
"Take her," he said in a strangled sob, still clutching the body to his chest.
I motioned for Esme, but when she stepped closer, Charles growled deeply. "She's covered in her mother's blood."
I didn't allow myself time to process his words. I looked at my family as they gazed upon the scene before them; none of them were breathing.
I sighed and knelt before Charles, taking the small, warm bundle wrapped in a bloodied sweater.
"Her mother, her wonderful, beautiful mother, wanted her name to be Isabella Marie," Charles said, rocking back and forth with the corpse of his bride in his arms.
I took in her appearance and realized upon looking at the child in my arms that she had torn her way through her mother's womb. No human could have survived such an ordeal.
"I tried to change her, but there was too much blood loss. I couldn't get to you in time."
"I'm sorry, Charles," I whispered, clasping a hand on his shoulder.
A small sigh interrupted my thoughts and the questions that I wanted to ask him. I looked down at the little girl in my arms. Her eyes were wide open and alert and surprisingly warm for brown. Her small head was covered in brown curls. Her cheeks were flushed, no doubt due to the frigid temperature.
I needed to get her out of the cold.
"Come, Charles, I must take her to the warmth of the cabin."
Charles nodded and then lifted his wife's dead body from the glittering red and white snow. My family turned to return the way we had come. From what I could see, they needed to leave the temptation of the blood we were leaving behind.
I constantly checked to make sure of Charles's path. We were just a few minutes from the cabin when Alice suddenly gasped, "NO!" and turned toward Charles, screaming.
I turned back to look back at him. He looked at me sadly with a small smile.
"Take care of her. No doubt she will be extraordinary."
With a flick of his fingers, he punctured his chest, swiping it across, venom spewing out of the jagged incision. I shook my head, screaming for him to stop. In just moments, he lit a match to his body and Renee's, and he burst into a plume of purple flames.
"No!" I screamed, falling to my knees, clutching his daughter to my chest.
"Take…care…of…her," he gasped before his body fell to the ground, turning to putrid ashes.
Another cry filled the night. The child in my arms looked upon the flames, her eyes wide and glistening.
She gazed up at me and then back at the fire, reaching out for the parents that would never again hold her.
September 1st 2007
~Isabella Swan Cullen
I turned over, trying to push the image of the flames from my mind. They'd been coming a lot lately, ever since I'd reached maturity. I had yet to tell Mom or Dad, but still, they were troubling me. No doubt Alice would "see" them soon enough.
Although, something else was worrying me. I remembered my Momma's face, but my father's, Charles, or Charlie, as I'd heard Momma call him... I was scared that I was starting to forget him. This man had given me life, after falling in love with my Momma. His voice I could remember after having heard it so many times while I'd been in my Momma's belly.
I choked back tears as I remembered my mother Renee. She had given her life to have me, to bring me into this world. I was the product of their doomed love.
Wiping my eyes, I tried my hardest to haul my ass out of bed – not that the thick, warm quilt wanted to me to go.
Today…gah. Today, I was starting high school.
My siblings Rosalie, Alice, Jasper and Emmett were joining me to enroll. I was a little mad at Dad for sending me, after he'd spent all those years educating me. I knew everything there was to know; he'd made sure of it.
Rosalie and Emmett were looking forward to me starting school, and it always spelled trouble when both Emmett and Rosalie were happy about something.
I loved my sister a lot, but Rosalie was as devious as Alice was sneaky. I knew as soon as I'd stepped into the bathroom that the outfit I'd picked last night would be discarded. I loved Alice, but God, no one could be that into fashion.
I showered and sure enough, a whole new outfit was laid out on my bed. Damn, it was a nice outfit. I smiled to myself as I slipped on the pink converse Alice had left me and shook my hair out in the mirror. I decided to just leave the unruly curls to themselves; they were my best feature, and Dad had told me I had my father's hair, curly and wild.
I walked into the kitchen, feeling all four sets of vampiric eyes on me. Emmett was the first to break.
"What's for breakfast, Bells? Mountain lion or Cheerios?"
"Very funny, asshat. How long did it take you to think of that?" I replied teasingly as I poured my cereal – Wheaties, to be exact.
"About six minutes and seventeen seconds," he replied with a proud grin.
"Wow! You're getting quicker. Anyone would think you actually had a brain in there now!" I said, sticking my tongue out.
"It's a damn good thing you're my sister, or I'd tell you exactly where to shove that tongue," he said and winked.
"Hey! We don't want the whole of Forks high school gossiping that we think incest is best!" Alice chipped in, chuckling.
"Alice!" Esme admonished as she came in and kissed my cheek. "Good morning, sweetheart. Sleep well?"
I nodded with a mouthful of cereal.
Alice just grinned, patting Esme on the back.
"Who are you riding with, Bells?" Emmett asked as he looked at my cereal with disgust.
"Definitely not you and your boom boom room of a Jeep. Don't think I don't know what you and Rose do in there," I said, hiding my grin.
"I always make him steam clean the seats after, so it's alright," Rosalie said. "Venom free."
"Ugh, still. I'll ride with Alice, thanks," I replied, taking a bite of my cereal. "No bodily fluids in the Porsche."
"That you know of," Emmett muttered.
"EWW!" Alice shrieked. "You better not have, Rose!"
Rosalie smacked Emmett full force across the head. "Apologize."
"Rosie," Emmett whined.
"Now," she warned him, "or I'm taking your jeep apart piece by piece, starting with the new iPod dock I just installed."
"Sorry, Alice, I swear I've never spurted the good stuff over your dash," he said evilly.
I flicked one of my Wheaties at him, and he jumped up in revulsion.
"You'll pay for that, Swan," he vowed.
"Okay, if you remember it in your goldfish brain," I snickered.
"Keep it comin', I'll remember," he said, glaring at me.
"I'll remember to leave you some post it notes around, Emmy." I grinned, clearing my bowl. "You know, to add to your collection?"
"I resent that remark, Isabella."
Jasper smiled amusedly at our banter. "I got your back, B."
I bumped fists with Jasper and flipped Emmett off as Esme turned her back.
"Isabella Swan Cullen, I saw that," called Carlisle as he walked into the kitchen.
"Shit," I muttered, and he raised his eyebrow. "Sorry, Dad."
He grinned, the smile reaching his golden eyes. "Your first day of school, are you nervous?"
Jasper snickered, "She's not, but evidently you are, Pops."
"She's our baby, of course I'm worried," he said softly.
"I'll be fine, and anyone that pisses me off, well…I'll set Emmett on them."
"Rose is scarier," Alice quipped while I nodded in agreement.
I felt the nervousness fly over me as Alice pulled into the parking lot of Forks High School. I saw people turn to stare at us as she backed in her Porsche to park next to Emmett.
So much for blending in; we'd never been able to.
Who chose a bright yellow Porsche to blend in? I wished my truck was ready. I'd have to remember to ask Rosalie to work on it tonight.
Jasper hit me with enthusiasm, and I growled as he winked at me over his shoulder. "Give me that million dollar smile, B." He laughed as I struggled to get out of the car.
"Shit!" I shrieked as I nearly fell out of the car, catching myself on the door.
"You're the only clumsy vampire I've ever met," Rosalie said as she came around and straightened my hair.
"Half vampire, actually," Alice corrected her. "One-of-a-kind."
"Stop with the one-of-a-kind stuff, Al. We don't know that," I said as I pushed down my hoodie. "Do I look okay?"
"You look good, Bella, trust me," Alice replied with a wink.
That damn wink.
"Come on, bitches, let's make our entrance," Emmett hollered.
I linked arms with Alice, and we walked as quickly as posing humans possibly could. This was like hell. Everyone was staring and whispering.
"Check out the new kids!"
"Look at the huge one!"
"I wonder where the hell they came from!"
"Wow, look at the blonde girl! Hottie McHot!"
I actually laughed at that last one, which pissed Emmett off to no end, and he possessively grabbed Rosalie's ass.
"Did he just…grab his sister's ass!?"
"They're adopted, you idiot!"
I was more than relieved to be inside the actual school, and I could breathe easy, knowing that all those humans were away from me, even for ten minutes. I'd never had a real problem with my bloodlust, but God, I had to admit, some of them smelled pretty good. I looked back at Jazz, finding his eyes black.
"Holding your breath?" I asked, and he nodded stiffly.
"We'll be fine," Alice said, laying her hand on his arm.
The school secretary, Mrs. Cope, handed us our schedules, and I groaned softly as we made our way out to the hall. "Anyone have English first period?"
Jasper nodded, and I felt relief fly through me, although I wasn't quite sure whether it was his or my own.
"You need to chill out, we're only here for a year. Carlizzle said so," Emmett drawled.
Rosalie cuffed Emmett's head. "Stop calling him that! You're not watching MTV anymore!"
"I have Spanish first period, and so does Rose…Emmett has P.E." Alice grinned. "What a shame."
"You suck." Emmett grimaced as he turned, looking for a sign that would direct him to the P.E block. "Ciao, bitches."
"He's been talking like that a lot. It's really starting to annoy me," Jasper said, throwing his irritation out at all of us.
I winced as the bell rang, sounding even louder to my sensitive ears. I hugged Rose and Alice goodbye and set off with Jasper to English.
I was happy to discover that the first assignment was on Wuthering Heights, a favorite book of mine. Lucky for me, I knew it inside out, so I was able to people-watch throughout the whole lesson. I noticed that one boy in particular kept looking back at me, and much to my amusement, he winked at me. I coughed to disguise my laughter as Jasper frowned at the boy.
"Serious case of the lusties, B," he whispered.
"Really?" I said, looking back to the boy and raising my eyebrow. He just gave me this cocky little grin and turned back toward the teacher.
"Staring at the new girl already, Mike?" I heard a nasally voice say, and I turned my head, looking at the girl who was glaring at me under several layers of makeup. She practically looked orange under the florescent lights.
I sniffed in her direction, tracing her scent. She did not smell good; too much perfume was clouding her natural essence.
The bell rang and Jasper sprang up, grabbing my bag as he walked out of the room. I laughed as I watched him storm out, desperate to be away from the mouthwatering kiddies. I had just reached the door when I felt a warm hand grab my arm. I turned around in shock, looking into the face of the winking boy.
"Hey, Isabella, is it?"
I removed his hand from my arm and glared at him. "It's Bella. Just Bella."
"Well, just Bella, I'm Mike. Do you wanna hang after school? Maybe come catch the first-day football game?"
"No she doesn't, asshat. Get your freakin' grubby hands away from my baby sister," Emmett boomed as he stood in the doorway, effectively blocking it.
"D-dude, I'm sorry," Mike stuttered, bolting for the door when Emmett stood aside to let people out.
"Yeah, you'd better be!" Emmett called, grinning evilly.
I sighed, fighting my grin.
Lunchtime for us was always a challenge; I either looked like a pig as I picked from my family's trays, or I looked like I was ravenous. Rosalie pushed her slice of pizza my way, grimacing as her fingers made minute contact with the slice of heaven. I smirked, picking up the pizza and moaning as I bit into it, licking my lips.
"That's disgusting, but still, it's turning on most of the plebeians in this place," she said, wiping her fingers with the napkin on the table.
I looked around the cafeteria, seeing several sets of eyes on me. I blushed, turning away.
"I hate the fucking staring," I hissed, throwing the pizza down on the tray.
"Stop swearing. You're only ten years old," Jasper said, elbowing me in the side.
I flicked a piece of pepperoni at him, and he caught it in his hand. "Ugh," he said, sniffing it. "Human food is disgusting."
"Well, Bella needs –" Alice cut off, exhaling sharply as her eyes went glassy.
"Shit!" Rosalie cursed, turning Alice's chair toward her to disguise her. Alice's eyes came back into focus, and she leaned in closer, whispering to Rosalie and me.
"We need to go home. Rose, you need to forge the call. Edward's home."
Edward? My absent brother, who sent presents on birthdays and Christmases? Edward, the prodigal son? Edward, who refused to abstain from human blood?
Something wasn't right…
I backed the Porsche out of the school lot, taking my time to watch Alice in the mirror as she searched for Edward's future. Rose had successfully sprung us all, and I was driving back with Alice as she prepared me to meet Edward.
I wasn't scared or worried; he wouldn't harm me. I wasn't like the rest of them, but I was different. By the time I plugged my cell into the dash charger, I had three missed calls from Dad.
"Shit, Alice. Why the hell is everyone freaking out about Edward coming home?" I asked as I pulled the speed up along the highway.
Sighing, she turned to face me. "Edward hunts humans because he thinks his gift makes him some sort of would-be God. I've met him, and when Jazz and I last got married, we stayed with Edward on our honeymoon. You have to understand, Bells. Even though you're half vampire, you're still half human. The human half of you smells very appetizing. We're just used to you now, so it's not a smell that makes us…thirsty anymore. But Edward's never smelt it before, and well…"
"You think he'll drain me now and think later?" I asked, panicking slightly, biting my lower lip.
"He won't drain you, Bella," Alice snorted, flicking her hair. "But he'll want to."
"Great," I sighed. "Why can't I ever meet any normal people?"
"I resent that remark," Alice said glaring. "And I'd rather be me than be normal. Normal is boring."
"You sound like Emmett," I said with a smirk. "You and he are like little and large."
She huffed and turned her head, closing her eyes as I pulled into our drive. There, right alongside Carlisle's Mercedes, was a lone silver Volvo.
I parked the Porsche and followed Alice into the house. Carlisle was at the door, holding his hand out for me, causing me to be instantly on edge. Jasper grimaced sympathetically at me as he went to Alice's side.
It was then that I saw him.
His head whipped around, his red eyes boring into mine. I took a step back as his nostrils flared, and he took a step forward, coming at me. His eyes narrowed and he growled at me, "Why can't I hear you!?"
"Excuse me?" I spluttered.
"You. I can't hear one single thought. It's quiet," he said, frustrated.
"How the hell am I supposed to know!?" I hissed, shaking my head.
That was a big mistake.
He inhaled deeply, pulling air in like it was the sweetest ambrosia.
Smells like freesia, and the sweetest taste of sin...
What the hell?
I wonder what she'd taste like…, what she'd feel like as I took her, sinking my teeth into that perfect neck…, the sound of her skin breaking as her life force flowed over my tongue…
"I can hear what you're thinking!" I shouted, jumping back.
He looked up, his eyes shining with confusion. "You can hear me?"
I looked him up and down. "Every single word."
He looked at me, gobsmacked. A flurry of thoughts and images ran through his mind.
I turned to Emmett, raising my eyebrows. "And you said he was a prude."
For ten years, I'd dealt with the overwhelming need to see my family. There'd been something holding me back. The calls and letters from them had become increasingly annoying. They'd all spoken about her.
My damn replacement, a void that my family had felt the need to fill. Maybe it was the damn fact that I was jealous that I was no longer missed.
I'd left them decades ago. I'd no longer been truly happy with them. I didn't know what it felt like to have a companion in the same way that Esme and Rosalie were to Carlisle and Emmett. I had no idea what it felt like to press my cold, hard, unyielding lips against another's.
I had no idea the extent of the love they felt for each other. I loved my family; that wasn't the problem. It just hadn't been easy watching them together. They were all just so…happy and content.
I had yet to discover that feeling.
I had traded that emotion, happiness, with adrenaline, so to speak. It wasn't physically possible for me to produce it. The exhilaration I felt when taking the life of the scum of the earth was overwhelming.
Now…not so much.
Now, I felt guilt. I was no different than them.
I didn't feel guilt for the lives I took. They all deserved it. It just wasn't my place to be their judge and executioner.
Not only that, but I had to live with the sick memories of some the horrific crimes they committed.
Those thoughts and memories were corrupting me.
Sick and sadistic thoughts filled my mind constantly. They were thoughts I would never really be able to repress if I kept up with my current method of hunting.
I started to play with the idea of taking some of the homeless; I felt that surely I would be ending their suffering.
Now, the memories of their suffering plagued my mind. After the third homeless man I'd taken, I knew I couldn't do this any longer.
But I tried here in the northern forests of Canada. I held an irritable bear, sinking my teeth into the flesh, allowing the putrid-smelling blood to fill my mouth.
I spat it back out.
I'd been trying for weeks. I knew I could not go home with red eyes. I had to at least attempt to go back to my previous diet.
I had a scheduled call with Carlisle coming, so I risked going into a small town for a new cell phone. Since I had broken the last one.
I knew they were moving to the Olympic Peninsula soon. Once again, they were posing as the picturesque family, with all the kiddies going off to school, while the doctor is admired by all the nurses.
Though, I did wonder how they were even attempting such a thing with a new member. Surely, surrounding this Bellawith the temptation of all those hormonal teenagers would prove to be difficult.
Carlisle himself had said that it had been a mere ten years since her rebirth. Why would he even attempt such a thing as high school so soon?
I made my purchase at local electronic store, prepaid. I was able to walk amongst humans without the desire to quench my thirst. They all had such unique scents. Some were more appealing than others, but what made my hunt for human blood more difficult were the thoughts that ran through their minds when they knew they were going to die.
To this day I'd heard the words "I'm going to die' seven thousand seven hundred forty-three times. Not just from the vile humans I'd killed, but from their victims, too.
Some of those hadn't deserved to die.
I wanted to go home, desperately. But I knew I couldn't, yet.
I dialed the number that I knew he would answer, as I drove outside city limits, making my way north.
"How are you?"
Sometimes I wished I could hear his thoughts over the phone. It would've helped me decipher his mood. Now he just sounded distant.
"I'm fine. I'm just –"
"What is it, Edward?" he asked somewhat cautiously. I could hear the sounds of papers being rustled in the background.
"I'm tired, Carlisle."
The silence that followed was deafening. I waited; his breathing had increased.
"What are you saying, Edward?" He sounded worried.
"I don't know. My mind is filled with images that I'll never be able to repress. I don't feel like me anymore. I find myself thinking like they do, sometimes."
"Are you saying that you feel the need to kill others, rape women, and destroy families by taking their loved ones?" he asked, his voice betrayed his calm delivery.
"No. Not those types of things."
How do I explain to someone who I respected and saw as my father figure that I felt the desire to sink my teeth into the bosom of a woman as I plunged into her over and over again? I had not found any of the women, human or vampire, that I'd seen lately appealing. Their thoughts usually squashed any attraction.
"If you're seeking companionship and family, we're here, Edward. We've always been here. But, I warn you…you must stick with our way of life."
In other words, drinking from humans was off limits.
"I'm trying, Carlisle. I can't seem to hold any of the…animal blood down."
There was a dark chuckle from my father. "Did you think it would be easy to transition back into our way of life?"
"It's been weeks, Carlisle. I've been trying for weeks."
"It's not going to be easy. Give it more time. You need to. Plus, it will give us more time to, um, prepare for your arrival."
I growled – her.
"Why would you need to prepare?" I asked through clenched teeth.
"Well, we have to build you a new room."
"Why? I've always had the top floor bedroom when we stay in Forks."
"Yes, but Bella is here with us now. It's hers."
I growled. She was taking everything from me. My family, their love, and now my room?
What was next?
"That room was the only one that allowed me some semblance of privacy and a quick escape out the damn window!" I roared, wishing we were having this conversation face to face.
"You have no right to take your anger out on me or the rest of the family. We have not seen you in years. I had no idea that you would choose now to come home," he said, his tone clearly angry.
"Well, I want to come home, so I want my room," I said, like a petulant child.
His answer was short and simple. It annoyed me that he refused to see reason. I'd been there first.
"Just where do you plan for me to stay if I decide to come home?"
"Frankly, Edward, I don't think it's wise to for you to come at the moment. Esme and I want you here more than anything – you are our son and we love you, but just…not until your desire for human blood is more controllable."
"I can control myself. I walked into a store to buy a phone and did not have any problems," I stated, trying to convince both him and myself.
"Yes, but how long did you hold your breath?"
I huffed. I didn't answer. I'd held my breath for eleven minutes, waiting for the damn cashier to figure out how to ring up a damn prepaid phone.
"That makes no difference. I'm strong enough to control myself."
I heard him sigh. "The room will remain Bella's. If you want to come home, we can change the extra bathroom and storage room on the same floor into your room. We'll make it as close to the same style to your old room as we can."
"Give us a few weeks. It will give you more time to grow accustomed to animal blood."
A few weeks? I was less than a day away.
I heard the sound of footsteps coming from Carlisle's end and a door being opened.
"Hey, Dad, we just passed by the school. Are you sure you're not sending me to purgatory?" a soothing, sensual voice said. "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't see..."
"Hold on, sweetheart. I'm on a call."
"No problem, Pops. I'm heading up to my room. I love all the shelves. I can fill them with my books. Love you!"
"Edward?" Carlisle said, waiting. He wanted me to hear her.
"I see that I'm not longer needed."
I hung up the phone.
She called him "Dad?"
She sounded so young.
She sounded…sensual. The sound of her voice, it – called to me.
Three days had passed since I'd spoken with my father, and I couldn't get our last conversation out of my head. Someone had taken my place among my family.
Invaded my home.
Invaded my room.
Invaded my thoughts.
My family had all given me descriptions of the new vampire. They'd never offered pictures, which I'd always found strange. Her voice and their descriptions alone were enough fuel a few fantasies to help with my current situation.
I'd had to resort to this more and more since my switch back to animal blood. Especially after I'd heard her voice.
I rested my forehead against the rough bark of the tree; I quickly removed my cock from the confines of my jeans.
"Edward," she said, her voice a throaty whisper. Her dark hair fanned around her, the grass beneath her tickling the pale skin of her naked back.
"Yes," I whispered, taking her ear in between my lips, suckling on it gently. Her granite skin was sweet under my tongue.
"I need you," she gasped as my fingers played with her folds. She was so wet. She was so very much mine.
I watched as her caramel eyes turned almost black as her desire for me increased. I inhaled deeply, enjoying the sweet scent of her arousal.
"With pleasure," I said huskily. In one quick movement, we were joined. We both moaned from the feeling of me filling her. She was made for me. Every inch of my cock was being squeezed by her tight, wet pussy.
This wasn't going to be gentle. I needed her as much as she needed me. I wanted deeper, faster, harder and fucking animalistic.
"Ready?" I asked before taking one of her nipples in my awaiting mouth.
"Yes," she cried out, her fingernails digging into the skin of my back. I groaned, enjoying the slight pain as I increased the force and depth of my thrusts.
"Edward," she said in perfect unison of my thrusts. Over and over again, my name left her lips, showing the pleasure that only I brought her. Her hips met me thrust for thrust, taking me in deeper and harder.
"Faster," she growled, only further fueling my desire for her body.
"Fuck," I growled back, taking her leg and draping it over my shoulder.
I fell back on my knees and increased the pressure and speed of my thrusts.
"Edward!" she screamed, clutching her head and closing her eyes in ecstasy. Her walls tightened and clenched around me.
"Not yet, Bella," I roared.
She bit her plump bottom lip and closed her eyes, fighting off her need to come. I kept on, and I felt the pressure in my abdomen, telling me I was close.
Bella's screams increased, scaring away flocks of birds and every living creature in the vicinity. I was sure my family could hear her – hear us.
Take that, Emmett. What was that you called me? Prude?
I fucked her harder and faster, and then I screamed, "Now!"
I groaned, watching streams of my venom hit the tree trunk. I collapsed on my knees.
I had to go home now.
I wondered if this had been Carlisle's plan all along, another attempt at finding me a mate.
I stopped for gas a few hours later, putting on a dark shade of sunglasses to hide my eyes. After many barely-successful attempts at hunting animals, my eyes still remained red.
I filled the tank up in my Volvo. I was putting on the gas cap when I heard something from inside.
"Fill up the bag with the money and no one gets hurt," a rough voice said from inside the small gas station.
I groaned. This will not end well, I thought. He was already thinking about killing the old man sitting behind the cash register.
I just couldn't stand here. I quickly looked at my reflection in the mirror – nothing recognizable. The beanie I was wearing currently covered my shocking hair color. The collar of the jacket I had on hid my face from cameras, and the glasses hid my eyes. I quickly parked my car several blocks away, keeping my mind on the old man to watch.
I walked toward the store. I heard the old man begging the armed robber not to hurt him. "George, what's going on out there?" A woman's voice could be heard from the back of the store.
I opened the front door, alerting them all of my presence. The man with the gun turned his weapon toward me, the barrel of his shotgun just inches from my chest.
I read his thoughts and realized this was not his first time. All of his attempts at armed robbery had led to someone's death. I growled, causing him to back away. I grabbed the barrel of the gun, pointing it upward. It went off, causing the older couple to cower behind the countertop, and the CCTV camera was seemingly destroyed. I snapped his wrist and took him by the collar. I threw the gun across the store, smashing a display of some stupid energy drink.
In a low whisper, I threatened the man. "You've killed many people, and they didn't deserve it."
He shook his head in shock. Taking him by force, I led him out the store front and went into the back alley.
He wouldn't be bothering anyone any longer.
I wiped my mouth and quickly disposed of the body miles away from the store. It was time for me to go home.
My father's car was in the driveway as I pulled up. I could hear that he was home, along with Esme. I turned off the car and looked in my rearview mirror. My eyes were still red but were rimmed with gold.
After feeding off the pathetic thief, I'd gorged myself on animals to at least make it seem like I was trying. I felt like I'd failed completely. I had no idea if Carlisle would still accept me.
I walked up the familiar path to a home I'd lived in many years ago. I was about to knock on the door, no longer feeling like I should just walk in. The door flew open suddenly, before my hand was able to meet the wood.
"Edward," Carlisle said, pulling the door aside so that I could enter.
"Carlisle," I said, brushing past him. He pulled me back by my coat and hugged me, holding on to me like he hadn't seen me in decades…which in all truth, he hadn't. He hadn't seen the real me in a long time.
Once in the foyer, he looked at my appearance, his eyes lingering on mine. I averted them, looking around the house. Some of the older furnishing had been replaced with more fashionable ones. The TV in the living room had not only increased in size had flattened.
There were pictures on the mantel; something I had never seen before. We normally didn't take pictures, since we had a photographic memory. Why would they now?
Most of them consisted of a baby in various stages of her first year of life. Dark curly hair and round red cheeks appeared in all of them. In some, she was pictured with Rosalie or Esme, others with my brothers.
Then it hit me. Bella was human?
I looked at Carlisle in question.
"She's not human, Edward. She's Charles' daughter."
Surely, he was fucking joking. Then his mind replayed the events from Charles' annual phone call to when Bella had entered their lives.
"She's half vampire and half human?" My mind reeled with the possibilities. I took a deep breath, and I regretted it almost instantly.
The sweetest smell I had ever come across filled my entire being.
So fucking sweet.
I ran up the stairs, Carlisle quick on my heels. I threw my door open and took in the appearance of my room.
Bloody fucking purple in various shades. There was a large king-size bed in the center of the room, covered in a pile of pillows and a dark silk comforter. The west wall was filled with books and my music and some new stuff I didn't recognize. There on the desk was a purple iMac. Behind it was a cork board filled with pictures of my family and drawings.
Beside the wall of windows was a large black chaise.
I turned back to Carlisle, who was looking at Bella's bed. "She sleeps. She eats either human food or animal blood. She prefers not to hunt, but her body sometimes craves it. She's warmer than most humans. From what we know, her skin is almost as strong as ours. She runs fast but –" he chuckled "– she sometimes trips over her own feet. She's absolutely beautiful."
He loved her – loved her like she was his own daughter. His mind was filled with memories, some of them painful, watching her grow so fast had scared all of them.
She had stopped growing just a few months ago.
I took a deep breath; her scent permeated every surface. Carlisle's head snapped toward me. He watched me warily.
I smirked. "She smells so good."
Carlisle was on the phone, running past me. He was going to warn them.
Let them. I wouldn't harm the little…what the hell did you call her? Surely Halfling was offensive. Hybrid, maybe?
I heard the sound of tires screeching into our driveway just a few miles away.
Looked like the little…girl was home. I slowly descended the stairs; both Carlisle and Esme were uneasy.
They both feared for their adopted daughter. Esme's mind felt relief for my arrival home and fear that Bella and I wouldn't get along. She never once thought I would take Bella's life.
"Edward," Carlisle said, "if her scent is too much for you, you may have to leave. I don't want you to, son, but she needs us."
They would choose her over me?
"I have no intentions of hurting her, much less biting her." Unless, of course, she asks me to.
I heard the crunch of the gravel as two cars pulled up. I could hear the thoughts of my family.
If lays one finger on her, I'll kill him. Rosalie's maternal thoughts continued much in the same way.
Ugh…I hate not knowing what's going to happen. Alice's thoughts were filled with concern, since she wasn't able to see Bella's future.
She'd never been able to. She relied on watching "around" her to see their futures.
Hmm…interesting, might prove useful.
My baby sister…he wouldn't hurt her. He'll never get a chance to. Emmett's mind was racing with thoughts of taking me down. Okay, you fabulously oversized meat head.
He seems calm, but there's an undercurrent of something else there. Jasper was already sensing my emotions.
Then as I listened for the other mind, but I came up blank. There seemed to be no one else with my siblings. However, I could distinctly hear her heart beating like a humming bird.
Carlisle went to meet them at the door.
I turned to see the creature and to see what all the fuss was about.
I took a small breath and was hit with her overwhelmingscent. So sweet, so warm. I could feel the heat radiating off her body.
Her body, oh God, her body. There she stood, her quiet mind only making the sound of her beating heart excruciatingly louder. The sound of her blood pumping through her body was only fueling my hunger.
Hunger I thought I'd quenched mere hours ago. There she stood, her nipples erect, and all I wanted was a taste. Not only of her sweet-scented blood but of her skin, covered in layers of clothing.
My eyes narrowed; I couldn't understand why I felt this need. This damn urge, now. Why couldn't I hear her thoughts?
"Why can't I hear you!?" I growled, remaining in place but dying to take a step closer. I was aware of the sudden tension in the air.
"Excuse me?" she asked, taking a small step back.
"You. I can't hear one single thought. It's quiet," I said, frustrated. I concentrated on her mind, shutting everyone else out. Nothing. Fucking nothing.
"How the hell am I supposed to know!?" she hissed, shaking her head, causing her luscious scent to hit me.
I inhaled deeply, savoring her scent on my tongue. My thoughts lingered on her scent.
Smells like freesia and the sweetest taste of sin…
I wonder what she'd taste like…, what she'd feel like as I took her, sinking my teeth into that perfect neck…, the sound of her skin breaking as her life force flowed over my tongue…
"I can hear what you're thinking!" she screamed, pointing an accusatory finger and jumping back from me.
What? That wasn't possible. "You can hear me?"
Her eyes raked over my body before answering. "Every single word."
I looked at her exquisite form. My fantasy did her no justice. She was even more beautiful than I imagined, and so warm.
Her fitted white dress shirt curved over her supple breasts, her nipples still peeking through the thin fabric. The flare of her hips called for my hands to hold and to bring her closer. Her legs were covered in painted-on grey tights that matched the grey waist coat. Her long hair cascaded down her back, my eyes lingering on the curve of her ass. Fucking perfection.
My eyes returned to her beautiful heart-shaped face like pale marble but with pink tinged cheeks.
Her eyes were not like the others. They were a deep chocolate, so warm and filled with questions. This might be a way to help decipher her thoughts.
Suddenly, my thoughts returned to the fantasy as I took her to pleasurable heights in the meadow just miles from here. I was hard in an instant.
She smirked at me and then turned to Emmett, cocking her eyebrows. "And you said he was a prude."
Emmett looked at Bella and then at me. He looked down at my crotch. Oh, Jesus on a pogo stick.
Emmett erupted into laughter.