Alternate Universe. Same state of characters (vampire/human) with a few minor changes (No Rosalie. Emmett was found by Esme and changed by Carlisle.) Character demeanor/development drastically different. I own nothing even remotely related to Twilight, this is just a work of my own imagination loosely based on the characters created by vampire- super genius Stephenie Meyer. Enjoy.

Part I: Ignorance is Bliss

Just as dismal as I remember it, I thought as the rain beat down on the roof of the cruiser. A dreary day in Forks, Washington wasn't hard to find. Charlie kept his full attention on the road, not quite sure how to break the ice. All the better, because I wasn't really in the conversational mood. I stared out the window and tried to forget the past two years' events that had warranted the move up here from Phoenix. I closed my eyes and shook my head slowly.

"What's the matter, Bells?" Charlie asked, finally finding his voice. I looked up at the sound of my name.

"Hmm? Oh. Nothing." I mumbled in response, then returned to staring out the window.

"You sure? You seem kind of…I don't know…sad," he shrugged. "Do you not want to be here?"

I sighed. He unfortunately was quite wrong. Here was exactly where I wanted to be. Away from Phoenix.


"Sorry Dad." I shifted in my seat to look at him, "I'm fine, really. And yes, I do want to be here."

"Good to know," he smiled, "Ah, here we are."

He pulled into the driveway of the little house I had spent my summers in and shut the cruiser's engine down. He exited the vehicle and proceeded to unload my meager belongings and lug them inside. I grabbed the last suitcase and slammed the trunk. That's when I noticed the faded red pick-up parked in front of the cruiser. I was sure it was the one Charlie told me about; the one from his old friend Billy Black. Billy was wheelchair bound and couldn't drive, so Charlie bought it from him when we it was decided that I was moving in. I put my suitcase down and did a once-over, circling the truck slowly. It supposedly ran like a dream, and looked like it held up like a tank. It was in one piece with no noticeable damage, which worked for me. I was just grateful for my own set of wheels. I made a mental note to thank Charlie after I got settled.

I walked back to the cruiser to pick up my luggage and as I turned to enter the house I stopped short. An obnoxiously large, probably overpriced, SUV was proceeding slowly past. This normally wouldn't have phased me, except that expensive cars in Forks were almost as rare as a lake in the middle of the desert. But it wasn't so much the car that struck me as it was the driver. He was staring directly at me, his eyes a remarkable honey-gold. My breath caught in my throat at the sight of him. He was positively enormous, extremely intimidating, and breathtakingly beautiful. His features could only be described as God-like, and it was all I could do not to gawk. I finger-waved nervously, but he only continued to glare at me, slowing the truck to almost a crawl. He moved only to run one of his bear-sized hands through his curly brown hair, before his passenger jabbed him with an elbow. The other boy was noticeably smaller with tousled bronze hair, and shared the same amazing features and unique amber eyes. He broke eye contact long enough to mutter something to his companion, then glanced back at me briefly before speeding off down the street.

I couldn't quite grasp what I had done to offend, but didn't care to stand around and ponder it. That boy was down right frightening. I swallowed the lump in my throat and turned up the stairs, almost running full force into Charlie. He must have come out sometime during my staring contest with the beautiful stranger. He was looking down the street where the car had just disappeared over the horizon.

"How long have you been standing there?" I asked, blushing slightly.

"Long enough," he muttered, his face expressionless.

"What is it, Dad? Who were they?" I turned my head in the direction of his gaze.

"Those were two of Dr. Cullen's boys…Emmett and…uh…" He snapped his fingers, struggling to remember the name, "Um…Edward, I think."

"You seem kind of angry, do you not like them?" I was curious now. What did he know?

"Oh it's nothing like that," he shook his head. "Dr. Cullen is a wonderful man, and his kids never cause trouble. It's just odd that they'd stop by like that. They tend to keep to themselves…" he trailed off.

"So you usually don't see them around much?" I asked

"No, not really" he answered. "They attend Forks High, where you'll be going…"

I rolled my eyes. He had a knack for stating the obvious.

"…Along with their other siblings. There's another brother, Jasper, and a sister, Alice. She's a bit of an odd duck, from what I've heard." Charlie chuckled. I wondered if the other two were as striking as Edward and Emmett.

"Four kids in high school?" I lifted my suitcase onto the porch and stepped out of the rain.

"Well, unfortunately Dr. Cullen and his wife were unable to have children," Charlie explained, "So they were kind enough to adopt." He turned and looked through the open door.

"Come on, Bells," he jerked his head toward the house. "Let's get in. It's going to get real cold real fast, and you probably want to get into some warm clothes."

I shrugged, taking that as the end to the conversation about the Cullen's. In truth, I was feeling a bit chilly and I really couldn't mask the grumble in my stomach. I heaved my suitcase through the door and followed my Dad inside.

I wasn't expecting much, especially from Charlie. He couldn't cook to save his life, and it was a small wonder how he had survived out here on his own. So it didn't really surprise me to find an open pizza box on the kitchen table after I had changed into some dry clothes. Charlie had set out some paper plates and napkins, and I heard some form a ball game emanating from the living room. I grabbed a water bottle from the fridge, threw two slices on a plate and carried my feast back up to my room.

I couldn't help but think about the boys with the strange eyes…not so much the driver but his passenger. Edward, I think his name was. Charlie had said he was Dr. Cullen's son. I thought back for a moment over all the times I had talked to and visited with Charlie over the years, and I didn't recall him ever mentioning a Dr. Cullen. He must be new in town. So why wasn't everyone gawking at him instead of me? I wasn't anything special, least of all compared to Edward. I opened my closet and gazed at myself in the mirror. Yep, still plain-old, boring Isabella Swan. Dark brown hair, milk-chocolate eyes and whiter-than white skin. I was a regular Medusa compared to Edward's Adonis. To call him beautiful would have been an understatement. I only saw his face, but it had left me breathless. Everything about it was perfect: defined cheek-bones, square jaw, gently sloping forehead into a perfectly-shaped nose. It was as if he had been carved from the highest-quality marble.

I suddenly shook my head, snapping myself back into reality. I didn't even know this boy! Why on earth should I remember every detail about his face?

How could you not? The thought intruded before I could stop it. He's devastatingly gorgeous.

My reflection seemed to smirk back at me.

"Cut it out," I said to myself. "You've hardly been here twelve hours and already you've got a crush? No, not a crush…"


No, too soon.

Infatuation, maybe?


"Now I'm talking to myself." I sighed and closed my closet door. I was starting school in the morning and hadn't even unpacked yet.

By the time I finished it was almost midnight. I crawled into bed, completely exhausted. I hoped I would have pleasant dreams, but of course I was plagued by the same nightmares that had haunted me for almost two years.

Tears poured down my face as I cradled my twin brother Isaac in my arms. I sneered viciously up at Patti, his less-than-stable ex-girlfriend. Her hand shook as she continued to point the gun at Isaac's chest.

"How?!" I screamed at her. "How could you do this to him?!"

"How?!" A maniacal smile spread across her face, "How?!" she screeched. "The same way I can do this!"

"Patti, no!" Isaac shouted. He sat up to reach out for her, but I wrapped my arms around his chest and yanked him back, protecting his body with my own. Patti laughed as she shoved the barrel of the gun in her mouth and pulled the trigger. Blood and brain matter splattered the wall behind her and she instantly crashed to the floor.

When I sat up, his blood had soaked the front of my shirt and my jeans. I looked down at him and gasped at the gaping bullet wounds in his chest and abdomen.

"Oh," I cried softly. "Oh Isaac…" I hefted him into my lap.

"Don't worry, Bella. I'm fine. Really. It doesn't hurt," he tried to laugh but ended up wincing in pain instead. My chin began to quiver and I bit my lip.

"Please, Bells, Please don't cry," he whispered. He laid a hand on my cheek. "I'm not in any pain."

"Ike don't," I began to protest, but he shook his head to silence me.

"Bella stop. I don't want you to be upset," he paused to cough, blood staining his teeth and lips. "Hey, you remember what we used to say before bed? You know, when we were kids?" I nodded, unable to speak.

" No matter how fart apart we may be, a piece of me is in you, and a piece of you is in me." I recited with him. I felt him shudder in my arms.

"You could always make me laugh, Ike. No matter what," I giggled. I looked down at him, but it was too late. He hadn't heard me. His hand slid off my face, leaving a bloody smear on my cheek. It fell limp on the floor.

"Ike?" I shook him, knowing it was useless. "Don't leave me! Please!!" I felt my heart begin to shatter.

"Oh God, no!" my voice broke. I hugged his head to my chest. "Isaac, no!!" I rocked his lifeless form slowly as the tears coursed down my face.

My brother, the other half of my heart, was gone.

I woke in a cold sweat and sat bolt upright in bed. I had hoped these nightmares would have stayed in Phoenix. I groped on my night stand for my Ambien and fought briefly with the cap. I popped two out of the bottle, choked them down and flopped back onto my pillow.

"Guess you can't run from your past," I muttered to myself.

I tossed briefly, then finally submitted to the medication and drifted into a dreamless sleep.