This is a little oneshot that came to my head under the bizzarrest of circumstances a while ago, and it's been niggling on my conscience so I had to write it down. I hope you enjoy it. It's about Leah Clearwater and its a little different from what I usually write, so I hope its good :s

Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight, Leah and nor do I own the fairytale about the Princess and the Pea. That belongs rightly so to Hans Christian Andersen. All mistakes are my own, please don't flame me for them


ONCE upon a time there was a prince who wanted to marry a princess; but she would have to be a real princess. He travelled all over the world to find one, but nowhere could he get what he wanted. There were princesses enough, but it was difficult to find out whether they were real ones. There was always something about them that was not as it should be. So he came home again and was sad, for he would have liked very much to have a real princess.

One evening a terrible storm came on; there was thunder and lightning, and the rain poured down in torrents. Suddenly a knocking was heard at the city gate, and the old king went to open it.

It was a princess standing out there in front of the gate. But, good gracious! what a sight the rain and the wind had made her look. The water ran down from her hair and clothes; it ran down into the toes of her shoes and out again at the heels. And yet she said that she was a real princess.

"Well, we'll soon find that out," thought the old queen. But she said nothing, went into the bed-room, took all the bedding off the bedstead, and laid a pea on the bottom; then she took twenty mattresses and laid them on the pea, and then twenty eider-down beds on top of the mattresses.

On this the princess had to lie all night. In the morning she was asked how she had slept.

"Oh, very badly!" said she. "I have scarcely closed my eyes all night. Heaven only knows what was in the bed, but I was lying on something hard, so that I am black and blue all over my body. It's horrible!"

Now they knew that she was a real princess because she had felt the pea right through the twenty mattresses and the twenty eider-down beds.

Nobody but a real princess could be as sensitive as that.

So the prince took her for his wife, for now he knew that he had a real princess; and the pea was put in the museum, where it may still be seen, if no one has stolen it.

There, that is a true story.

When my mother told me that story, when I was a little girl, she always finished with 'and they lived happily ever after'. Any of the fairytales she told me ended the same way, and so I guess you could say that I grew up with a rather skewed version of reality: I always wanted to be a princess, and I dreamt that one day my own prince would come and we would ride of into the sunset, and everything would forever be perfect.

I always preferred the stories she told me to the ones my dad did. He always filled the tales with monsters and scary beasts that always ruined everything good. And there would only rarely be a happily ever after. Even if there was, it came after so much heartache and struggle that it left even my five year old self wondering if it was even worth it. My mother scolded him for scaring me when she heard me tiptoe into their room in the middle of the night, or she found the bathroom light on the following morning, but he never stopped the scary stories. In fact, he'd always criticise my mother for filling my head with perfect ideals that would never come to pass, because he's always felt I needed to be prepared. I didn't understand him then.

Sadly, its depressing that what he used to tell me actually became my reality. That the world really is full of monsters and beasts. That there will always be more struggle than anything really seems to be worth. That there are rarely ever any happy endings.

Because my life, for all my wishes and dreams, is not a fairytale.

I'm not a princess.

I don't have a prince.

And my happily ever after seems nowhere in sight.

Even as a teenager though, I held onto my childish ideals. In the beginning, I thought maybe I did have a shot, that maybe I would find my happy ending. You were my prince. You treated me like your princess. And I was happy. But then the monsters appeared, and just like in the horror stories my father told me as a child, the happiness I felt was ripped away and I was left broken, with a torn soul I didn't know how to fix.

It's still that way I suppose.

I realise that having a one-sided conversation with a mirror is quite obviously a sign of madness. My reflection, naturally pulling the identical grimace to what I can feel on my face, stares back at me, mocking, questioning my sanity. I realise that imagining you stood in front of me is beyond rational capability, and that even if pretend I'm having this conversation with you, you're not really here with me. Not really listening, or even quiet possibly caring, about what I have to say.

So I guess I should stop referring to my life as a failed fairytale. It never was one and never will be one. And strangely, I no longer care. I don't hold out hope for a happily ever after anymore. I have more pressing concerns about reality itself to bother feeling self-pity that my life didn't turn out the way my five year old self hoped it would.

Do you know what I miss the most? Having an element of choice in my life. Or the fact that I lost who I was, the essence that made me who I am. Or maybe it was being able to have secrets, real unknown secrets from people, without having to worry about broadcasting my thoughts unexpectedly.

Or maybe even I miss you the most. Miss what we had before this whole mess happened. I know talking about this in hindsight it pathetic. Or maybe its not. I don't really know.

I don't really know anything anymore.

Except one thing: I can't stay here anymore.

So I'm reclaiming my right to have a choice, to have a say in the life I've been forced to lead. I'm leaving. And I doubt I'm coming back. The life here, the life set out for me before I was even born? It's not for me. Its not what I want.

I can almost here you in my head, saying that none of us wanted this, that if we could, we would all get rid of the cursed gene inside us. That I can't abandon my pack, my heritage, my life and destiny, as you once so eloquently put it. I imagine you'd try to force me to stay. Not because of me, but because in theory, it's the right thing to do.

You always so the right thing.

But I don't. I'm not in charge of a pack I can't leave behind. I'm not needed for some immanent crisis that only we can prevent. My world, our world, is safe again, at least for now, and there is no reason for me to stay anymore.

I know my obligations, I know what's in my blood. I know what was laid down for me in my birthright. And I'm still leaving.

Because aside from the pack, and my mother and brother, what do I have left here to stay for? I have no job, I live at home, I have a basic education but can't afford college. I don't have a husband, or even a boyfriend or someone to call my own. Because Lord knows I'll never imprint here. If its not happened already, it never will. I can't even have children. This life took so many things away from me, that I have no choice but to exercise my choice over the one thing I have left, the one thing that I can still mostly control. Namely, leaving this all behind.

Maybe once, my life was here. And if the world was the way it was supposed to be, without monsters and demons, it would still be here.

I guess I'll never know.

But I do know that my life, however is should once have turned out, isn't here anymore.

I refuse to be tied down.

I refuse to stand for something which I don't really want.

I refuse to stand back and watch as the life I wanted, the life I should have had plays out, but instead of me, someone else plays my role.

I refuse to accept my destiny, because I never had a choice.

I'm starting a new life, away from all this. Everything in La Push, everything in my birthright, it's staying here. I'm laying to rest all my demons, and I'm going to start afresh, somewhere new, somewhere different. Somewhere I can be me again, without the obligations and restrictions imposed on my life.

To be honest, I'm not sure anyone will miss me. Seth maybe, but he's my brother. He has no choice in the matter. Sometimes I think the others forget that we can read each others every thought. So I know how you all view me, how you all think I'm bitter and twisted. That doesn't bother me.

I wasn't always like this. But this is the effect of our legacy. And I have to come to terms with that, on my grounds and in my own time.

But you know, I think that maybe I could have coped. Maybe I would have been okay with all this, or as close to okay as possible, if I still had you in my life.

After all, I never did get over you.

And if I don't get out now, I'm not sure I ever will.

I understand it much better now than I did back then. When it first happened, I didn't know what you were, what we were. I didn't understand how everything could just change, just like that. Especially not with someone I adored, like my cousin. But now, having seen it in action, I can't pretend not to understand. I don't have that luxury. I realised a long time ago that this wasn't your fault. That these were circumstances that we had no control over, and I don't begrudge you for that. How can I? But I was still angry. Very angry. And its taken me this long to work through that.

I was angry that you'd moved on so quickly. I was angry that you'd fallen for my cousin, the one person I was closest to in the whole world. I was angry that I couldn't be enough. I was angry that I didn't understand. Even after I saw it, felt it, I was still angry. Because I had no choice, you had no choice. Or maybe I'm just blaming this curse for something that would have happened anyway. Maybe we were already facing the end, and I was just too blindsided to see it.

We'll never know.

But I've made my peace with this. Or at least, I've made my peace with what happened between us. I realised that I've held on to you and what we had for too long. And now I want to let that go. I want to be able to wish you and Emily a happy marriage. I want to be able to hope that you have a good life together. I want to have what you have. And I know now that if I stay here, surrounded by all the memories of us and everything else that I had no choice over, I'll never be able to do that.

So please let me have this. Let me leave. Of course, I'm going to anyway, but I'd at least like your approval. Don't follow me, don't convince me to come back, don't stand in my way. I'm leaving behind everything. My life, my legacy, my family. I won't be the only female pack member. I won't be Seth's sister, or my mother's daughter. I won't be the bitter and twisted ex that can't seem to move on.

I'll just be Leah Clearwater.

Just me.


Please let me know what you think :) The little purple button does wonders for my ego :P