DISCLAIMER: I do not own any part of Twilight or its characters, they are all owned by Stephanie Meyer.

Chapter 11- Return


I finally returned home to see my family. I had missed them in the week I had been in Alaska, hating myself for nearly killing someone. But I was back now, determined to not let the call of Bella Swan's blood undermine my resolve. I was sure she was a devil sent to tempt the monster within me.

I came in through my open bedroom window, and quickly crossed the room, eager to greet my family. I paused, my hand on the knob of my unopened door, as I was suddenly hit with the combination of the torturous scent that had seen me nearly kill Bella last week, and the sound of beautiful, unfamiliar laughter coming from Alice's room.

I focussed on Alice's thoughts, and my confusion suddenly turned to fury as I realised that it was indeed Bella Swan who was in the house, laughing with Alice, and of all people, Rose. I snarled softly, how dare they invite my own personal demon into the house? I thought angrily. But as I continued to watch through Alice's eyes my anger quickly turned to shock and astonishment.

Bella was laughing, her head thrown back, and her beautiful brown eyes sparkling as she helped Rose and Alice place clothes and shoes in Alice's enormous wardrobe. I suddenly realised that Alice and Rose had gone shopping with Bella this weekend, and my eyes widened in surprise. While Alice would, in all likelihood, go shopping with anyone, Rosalie going shopping with a human was astounding- especially as it was the very one I had wanted to kill.

As I puzzled over their behaviour I realised that I didn't, no couldn't, hate Bella. It wasn't her fault that her blood called to me. I sighed, realising I was still standing by my door, I released the door knob and settled down to eavesdrop. I wasn't going to leave this room while Bella was in the house and take the chance that I might attack her, so I was stuck here until she left.

Alice already knew I was back, but the others didn't. Welcome back Edward she thought at me, pleased. I continued watching them as they moved to the spare room next to mine, where five suitcases were already piled in the middle of the room. They began to unpack them, placing armload after armload of clothes into the closet. I sat there confused, Why would Alice or Rose be putting clothes into this wardrobe, couldn't they fit their stuff in their own wardrobes anymore? My thoughts were soon answered though when Bella turned to Alice.

"Thanks for letting me keep all this stuff here Alice." She said, indicating the wardrobe, now filled with enough clothes and shoes to rival Esme (Though certainly not enough to rival Rose or Alice yet). "I think Charlie would have a fit if I came home with all of this," she chuckled and Rose and Alice joined her.

I hadn't seen my sisters enjoy themselves this much in a long time. "Besides, I'd never have been able to fit it all in my room, let alone my little closet." She continued. A thought suddenly occurred to her and she grinned. "What with you guys letting me keep my stuff in the spare room, my car in the garage, and my harp in downstairs, I almost feel like I'm moving in."

Alice's thoughts became happy and speculative; She'd make such a wonderful new sister! I wonder... before her thoughts cut abruptly off with the lyrics to the never ending song. "You're welcome Bella, you may as well consider the spare room yours anyway. We almost never have guests." She explained. Downstairs I could hear Esme silently planning to redecorate the room for Bella, in case Alice and Rose ever invited her to stay the night.

I was shocked and confused, Alice wanted a human as a sister? Even more surprising was that the rest of the family members also quite liked the thought of Bella moving in, even Carlisle, who, I gathered from his thoughts, had only just met her, was already getting attached. Jasper had no thoughts of killing Bella at all, and was happy to have Bella around because she made Alice happy. Emmett found Bella incredibly entertaining, and I laughed as I saw from his thoughts how clumsy she was.

What surprised me most though was to hear Rose's thoughts. Rose had always been the most protective of everyone in the family, and I never thought I would see the day when she would voluntarily interact with a human, let alone actually like them. Bella seemed to have made my family happier, and the only sadness I could find in their thoughts was that, on some level, they were all missing me.

I silently mused, continuing in my thoughts as the rest of Bella's words sunk in. Why would she need to keep her car and a harp here? Surely Rose would never let Bella's decrepit old truck stay in our garage? Why would it need to anyway? And what was that about a harp? I had read enough teenage minds over the years to know that there was no way someone as beautiful and popular as Bella would play a harp. It would be considered nerdy, and people who wanted to fit in and be popular at school picked "cool" instruments like guitars.

I was soon proven wrong in my assumptions by Esme, who had joined the girls in what was now Bella's room. "Bella, your harp arrived yesterday. I put it next to the Edward's piano," She informed her. "It's beautiful." She commented. In Esme's mind I saw a large harp now resting next to my piano downstairs, and a replay of the conversation that had lead to Esme offering to keep it here for Bella.

Once again I was astonished, and I found myself frustrated that I couldn't read her mind. She never seemed to do anything expected. She appeared to be completely comfortable in a house full of vampires, when her instincts should have told her to run. She didn't do what normal things a teenage girl would do. I found myself pleasantly surprised. She not only played an instrument, but many, and she composed as well.

Everything about her was intriguing, and I found that I had a sudden desire to talk to her. I quickly dismissed the thought as I hesitantly took a small breath and felt my throat erupt into flames. It was tolerable because of the distance between us and the fact that I had just gorged myself on blood, but it was still incredibly painful.

I sighed, the one human I find that is actually interesting and I can't read her mind, I thought.

My interest spiked as I heard Bella, "I would love to play something for you Esme." She offered.

Esme was delighted, and she quickly accepted the offer and lead Bella downstairs, the others following. Emmett and Jasper paused the video game they were playing, and turned towards the harp. Carlisle appeared from his office and settled on the couch next to Esme as Bella sat at her harp and began, her fingers lovingly plucking the strings.

I listened; entranced as I soon recognised the song she was playing as one of my favourites, Claire De Lune, by Debussy. I softly hummed along, and I was delighted when it came to a finished, and instead of stopping she immediately moved on to another Debussy piece, Arabesque.

She paused for a moment after Arabesque came to a halt and explained the next song. "This next piece is one I composed for my Aunt Di, who taught me to play and founded my love of music." She began playing a beautiful melody, full of happiness and fun. I relaxed on my couch and let the music flow through me, awestruck by her talent. Unsurprisingly, my family's thoughts mirrored my own as they complimented her on her performance.

After Bella had shyly received their compliments, she exchanged a mischievous glance with Rose, who nodded and quickly disappeared, returning with three large stacks of photos, which she casually tossed onto the coffee table in front of Emmett and Jasper.

I looked through their eyes, curious to see what was in the photographs. Emmett and Jasper's thoughts turned petulant as they focussed on the photos, while Alice and Rose's turned gleeful.

There was picture after picture of Rose, Alice and Bella shopping, ice-skating, and playing on roller coasters and waterslides. "You tricked us!" Emmett accused, rounding on the girls. "You knew there was an amusement park there and you didn't tell us!" he complained.

They laughed at him. "We didn't see you guys volunteering to come with us," Alice retaliated. They looked slightly ashamed of themselves.

"Emmett, we should have known something was up when they didn't try and get us to come with them and hold their bags." Jasper muttered wryly as they continued to look through the pictures. Behind them Esme and Carlisle laughed at them.

I couldn't help but chuckle softly as I observed the pictures through their eyes. All three girls looked unbelievably beautiful and were glowing with excitement and happiness. Bella was perhaps the only human I had ever seen that could match a pair of vampires for beauty.

The girls all continued laughing at Emmett and Jasper and teasing them before they finally promised that next time they went to that particular mall the guys could come. I found myself hoping that the invite included me.

To further mollify Emmett and Jasper they then produced some of the latest video games and handed them over. Bella explaining that two of her European cousins had recommended them. Emmett jumped up and thanked them all enthusiastically, hugging all three separately. I was surprised when Bella didn't wince at the strength of his hug. Emmett wasn't used to hugging humans, and he had squeezed her as hard as he had done to Rose and Alice, but she had given no sign of being in pain. I shrugged it off, figuring that perhaps he had tempered down all of his hugs.


Bella left soon after, Rose and Alice taking her back home as it was now Sunday evening, and Bella hadn't been home since Friday evening. She took with her a few shopping bags, less than an eighth of the stuff she had actually purchased, the rest safely ensconced in what was now her closet in the spare room.

I waited until they were gone before heading downstairs, my throat burning as Bella's fresh scent hit me. I swallowed back the venom, surprised that it was getting easier to ignore her scent, and embrace Esme, who had come running towards me. "Welcome back." She murmured softly. It's good to have you home son.

"It's good to be back." I said softly, before moving out of her embrace to give Carlisle a nod and fist bump Emmett and Jasper. I settled down next to them and took my first look at the photos with my own eyes, flicking through them and noting how much all three girls appeared to have enjoyed their long shopping trip and how at ease Bella looked with my vampire sisters.

I could tell from Emmett and Jasper's thoughts that they were still upset that they hadn't been able to go, and I couldn't miss a chance to tease them. "The one time you two don't go shopping with your wives and there's an amusement park in the Mall!" I laughed at them.

"Shut up Eddie." Emmett grumbled.

"Don't call me Eddie." I growled, and Emmett laughed.

"So what's the deal with Bella?" I asked, changing the subject.

"Dude you wouldn't believe her, she has absolutely no fear of us. I even gave her a menacing grin that usually makes humans run away, and she just laughed at me." Emmett complained, slightly put out that she wasn't scared by him.

"She's completely comfortable around us." Jasper added. "Not one ounce of fear."

I furrowed my brows, confused as they told me, and showed me with their thoughts all of their interactions with Bella since I had left. I was amazed that she had just walked up to their table at lunch, though I completely understood her need to get away from Jessica, having been subjected to her thoughts for a while now.

I laughed when they showed me their shock when Bella had hijacked them and sped at over 200mph all the way to Port Angeles, and I was incredibly impressed when I found that she had a Maserati GTS arriving that would be staying in our garage so that her father wouldn't know about her obsession with fast cars. I was relieved to note that it wouldn't be her old truck staying in the garage like I'd first thought.

Most surprising though, was that I found myself inwardly growling at the idea of that foul Mike Newton touching her, and I had no idea why. It wasn't like she was my possession. I calmed myself with the thought that I just didn't like Newton, it had nothing to do with Bella, a girl I barely knew.

All in all, Bella was becoming a person of extreme interest to me. She had a love of fast cars and music, with her tastes in both similar to my own and I found myself eager for the next day to come so that I would be able to see her, and hopefully talk to her.

As I mused over this I realised that I had gotten somewhat used to breathing in Bella's scent, which was all over the house, and that I had been ignoring the burn in my throat for quite a while as I engrossed myself in Emmett and Jasper's description of Bella. I just hoped that it would be as easy to ignore her scent tomorrow at school; I was keen to meet the little human that had enchanted my family.

Sorry this one took a little longer- my computer was being temperamental.