I walked through the door to see Bella staring at me in horror. She recovered quickly. "Um, hello, Carlisle." At least, she tried to recover quickly. Her eyes were still wide, still alarmed.
"Hello, Bella." I replied. The way she was acting, like a child caught doing something wrong, alarmed me. "Is everything alright?"
Bella never got the chance to reply. "Fine! Everything's fine! In fact, it's all so great you should go away and come back in about an hour! Yeah." Nessie was shouting down the stairs, her tone of voice one of near panic.
Emmett joined the fray. "Everything's good, Carlisle!" He added. I knew that tone. There was nothing good going on here.
"What's going on?" I demanded, worried. Bella winced.
"Nothing!" That was Jacob. "Nothing's going on, Dr. Fang!"
I took a deep breath, and reminded myself to stay calm. And to think just this morning my colleagues were giving me a hard time about having the 'perfect family.' To think they were envious of me, proclaiming that I never had any trouble with my perfectly behaved family.
"What's wrong?" I asked Bella. She flinched.
Emmett spoke up again. "Nothing! Honestly! Everything's fine-ouch!"
"No, it isn't!" That was Jasper, and he was angry. "Carlisle, they-" His voice cut off abruptly, and I heard a soft whumpf.
"Jasper?" I called. Bella was looking immensely guilty by now.
Alice materialized behind me, practically snarling. "Unhand my husband this instant!" She roared to those upstairs. Then she turned to me. "Hi, Carlisle." She greeted me brightly. Her mood altered back as she turned her attention back to those upstairs. "If I have to come up there-"
There was a scuffling sound, and Emmett declared, a tinge of worry in his voice, "Okay, okay, we let him go!"
We? What was going on here? Alice turned to glare at Bella, who shrank back.
"I didn't mean for it to go this far." She defended herself. Alice just growled at her.
"Emmett!" Alice called up the stairs. "Jacob! Leave my husband alone. Nessie's fine."
"Alice?" I asked hesitantly. She whipped around to face me, and smiled reassuringly.
"What's going on?" I asked.
"Oh." Alice rolled her eyes. "Jasper's been teaching Nessie to fight."
"What?" I asked. What did that have to do with-
She sighed. "Well, Bella came in on them, and Jasper had Nessie pinned to the wall, and she couldn't get loose, and was actually starting to get aggravated over it. So Bella overreacted and threw a fit, and went after Jasper. And then Jacob and Emmett got into the act, and I think those two practically annihilated my room trying to get Jasper. And now Bella's embarrassed because she realizes that Nessie's okay."
"I see." I said. It was one of those days, when those sort of things happened. I sighed.
"I'm really sorry, Carlisle." Bella said awkwardly. "I didn't think."
"It's not Carlisle that had to suffer the wrath of Jacob and Emmett." Alice grumbled.
Bella winced. "Sorry, Jasper!" She called.
"No problem, Bella. It happens." Jasper's voice was strained.
Nessie joined in. "I'm sorry too." She said. "I didn't think everyone would be so stupid."
"Nessie-" Jacob protested. "I thought he had-What else was I going to do?"
"You could make sure I'm actually hurt next time before you guys start ripping Uncle Jazzy to pieces." Nessie snapped, and a shiver ran down my spine.
"No! We didn't rip him apart!" Emmett tried to reassure me. I was not immensely relieved.
"Honestly, Dr. Fang!" Jacob added. "Rip him into pieces? That's ridiculous!"
Alice growled. "Only because people came home first!" She snarled.
"Alice, it's okay." Jasper said tiredly. "I'm fine."
"You are now!" She retorted.
"No he isn't!" Nessie snapped, still rather upset. "And you guys all overreact too much! I'm perfectly safe with Uncle Jazzy!"
"Okay, okay, sheesh!" Jacob called. "I'm sorry, okay, Jasper?"
"Yeah, sure." Jasper replied. "Emmett?"
"What? You know I'm sorry. Bella and Jacob were dead certain that you were attacking her or something."
"And anyway, we wrestle enough that you knew I wasn't really going to hurt you. Much."
"Yeah, I know."
"We're okay then?"
"Almost?" Emmett sounded worried.
"Yeah. There's something else."
"What?" Emmett gulped.
Jasper sighed. "Can I have my arm back?" I winced, Alice sighed, Bella shuddered. She looked at Alice.
"I thought they weren't-"
"Ripping him into pieces?" Alice finished. "They just tore his arm off. And they didn't really even mean to do that. He just kind of jerked at the wrong moment, and…" She trailed off.
"Your arm?" Emmett asked, chuckling nervously.
"Yes. My arm." Jasper was losing his patience.
"I don't know-"
"Give me back my arm!" He was growling now.
"Give me back my arm before I tear your head off, and shove it up your-"
"I don't have it." Emmett finally managed to get out.
"What?" There were times when Jasper's patience wore thin. This was one of those few times. I hoped Emmett had the sense not to anger him farther.
"I do not!" Jacob insisted. "I think it's in the bathroom."
"I hate you. Both of you." Jasper snarled as he stalked into the bathroom.
Esme and Rosalie chose to return, then; they had been shopping with Alice before she left them. Esme shot me a quizzical glance as Emmett and Jacob flew down the stairs, past her and Rosalie, and out the door, and Jasper followed behind, massaging his right shoulder and grumbling, while Nessie apologized to Jasper again and Bella tried to hide from him.
"Just one of those days, love." I reassured her. She nodded. When you were part of a family of vampires, things like this simply tended to happen now and again. You just dealt with it, and went on about your business, and were thankful that no one was seriously injured.
I couldn't help but think back this morning as my colleagues had once again commented on how they would love to trade me families sometime.
Author's note: Another not really serious one-shot. I hope it wasn't too ridiculous. I certainly enjoyed writing it.
Disclaimer: Twilight does not belong to me.