Hey, and welcome to IMMERSION! This story is *only* five chapters (had to ADD one, so it's SIX chapters), plus one epilogue and won't contain 843 extra epilogues, like GUARDING EDWARD does. There are a couple of side-shots completed by guest authors...and maybe a couple more to come in 2010...
Before you start reading I'd like to point out that MOST, if not ALL of the people reading TWILIGHT FAN FICTION already know the basics of StephEnie Meyer's vampire mythology. So, I'm not going to go into detail about that here. YOU all know the details already.
I will answer a couple of question right off the bat though:
Yes, they are living in Forks. Edward has lived there his whole life. The Cullens have just been there as a family, this time, for a week or so.
Yes, Bella can read all minds, even Edward's. As Sare Liz said in her wonderful THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, that would really make things so much easier on both parties. I'm not into writing a lot of angst, so that works for me.
Edward is *just* incredibly smart…and HOT…he has no gifts…yet!
I've mixed imprinting into this story. I've read a couple of stories recently along that theme: LJ Summers' THE HARDEST PART and THE IMPERATIVE and ELEMENTAL by TallulahBelle. Those stories made me want to write one of my own. In SM's saga, finding one's soul mate was a lot like imprinting. Once the decision was made, that was it. Well, until he walked away, and we all know how that worked out, or not, as the case may be. My premise is that vampire imprinting is based on their sense of smell. We know how strong that sense is in SM's vampires and I've taken it just a step or two farther here.
While these characters are *mostly* in canon, with a few tweaks here and there, their back stories are not.
Writing lemons kills me, especially when others do it so much better…but there will be LIMES here…hence the rating. If you'd be embarrassed if your mom, dad, sister, brother, aunt, priest, minister or a small child caught you reading this, then you probably shouldn't be reading…close it down now!
We also know that StephEnie Meyer owns these characters…I just like playing with them a bit, well, a LOT. SHE'S the one making money off of them…me, not at all.
I'll update IMMERSION about once a week…and, like I said previously…it's all done, no waiting for me to continue typing.
I will be writing Esme's POV for GUARDING EDWARD'S never-ending epilogues this week. And I'm about a third of the way through DRAGON STONES' third chapter. Not to worry, they are a little neglected but not abandoned. Make sure that you've listed me as an AUTHOR ALERT and you'll be able to see when they do update.
Thanks for reading and please hit that review button when you get to the end of each chapter…I'd love to hear what you think about this story…
What was that? Since my arrival at school this morning, initially as I walked to my locker and then to my first class, I kept getting a whiff of something wafting through the hallways, some scent that would almost drop me to my knees it was so good. Better than warm chocolate chip cookies, better than a newly opened rosebud, better than the air after a spring rain. Gah...I sounded like a freaking poet.
But the scent was, in fact, exquisite. My mouth would even water! It touched something deep in the core of my soul, pulling me towards something. I felt an immense amount of anticipation. Something was going to happen, but I had no idea what that something was. I had never felt like this before and I found it a little freaky. But then I'd get just a hint of that scent again and I'd find myself trying to pinpoint its origin.
I tried to keep it subtle, but I must have looked like an idiot as I sniffed the air around me. In my first class of the day I was caught by Lauren. She probably thought that I was enjoying the hoochie woman perfume she bathed in. I grabbed a tissue from the box on the teacher's desk and blew my nose into it noisily. She glared at me and continued to her desk.
That was much better than when she was hitting on me at the beginning of the school year. I had grown a lot taller over the summer and my job at the feed store had encouraged muscles to grow on my somewhat lean body. When school started a lot of the girls who had never given me more than a passing look had paused, looked me over a second time, and then decided to talk to me. It could have been nice, if any of them had had more than two brain cells to rub together.
I did have some really good friends, Angela, Ben, Gary, Sandi and Andrea. We were all in the debate club. Yes, geeks one and all. But we were already getting attention from some of the better colleges around the country. We had won all of our matches as sophomores and now as juniors we were doing really well. Some of the matches had been against really good teams too.
Ben and Angela are a couple, but we all just hang out together. It's like having brothers and sisters. We ragged on each other, teased each other…and supported one another when times were bad. Like when Jessica and Lauren had decided that Andrea was the "it" girl for tormenting last year. That had been bad. They had targeted her and had started to make her life a living hell. When we realized what was happening, we all stepped up and made them back off. One of us was in every class she had and none of us would stand for it. They finally gave up, much to the relief of all of us. They had left us alone since then.
Well they had left us all alone until the beginning of this year, when they decided that I was the one to pursue. My friends had first thought it was funny, especially the guys. When they discovered me pressed up against the wall with two girls slipping up and down my thighs, their hands underneath my shirt and me trying to push them away with a terrified look on my face, they had stepped in and rescued me.
I hadn't wanted to hurt the girls, and to begin with I had been shocked when Jessica and Lauren had basically attacked me. But if my friends hadn't found me, I think I would have actually punched them both. A shudder slipped down my spine when I thought back to it. Great, my first almost sexual experience had been in the hallway after school was over, with two of the easiest girls in school. Yes, it could have been fun, if that's what I had wanted. Gah…even thinking about it made me want to go home and shower.
Yeah, if that's what I had wanted I guess it could have been fun. It made me sound old fashioned or something, but I really wanted my romantic life to be that…romantic. Not just a quick grope and tussle with someone who meant nothing to me. It's not like I watched chick flicks or read romance novels, but I had seen the way my parents were together. Ben and Angela too, they loved each other. They got each other's nuances. They laughed and cried together. We had threatened to dump cold water on them occasionally because they had passion too. A lot of passion…
That scent from earlier washed over me again as I entered my second class of the day and I sniffed appreciatively. Where was that coming from? As I walked to my seat in the back row, I noticed a small girl standing by the teacher's desk. She had short spiky black hair on her head and four inch spiky black high heels on her feet. Ah, one of the new kids.
I had heard that there were going to be some new kids in school today. In fact, everyone had been talking about it for weeks now. The new doctor and his wife, and their five adopted kids, had arrived in town a week ago and the gossip had been going nonstop since then. Anything new in our small town got chewed over in the school, the diner and on street corners for ages.
I had heard rumors of how beautiful the family was. I didn't care about that, I just wondered if any of them would be bright enough to join our debate team. Sandi's dad was in the military and they were going to have to move to Washington DC in the next month, before Thanksgiving. We were going to be short a member and there was no one in this school that could even come close to taking her place. Just thinking about breaking up our team, our family, was hard. We were all trying to avoid it.
Mr. Griffen called the class to order and introduced the new student.
"Everyone, this is Alice Cullen." Alice smiled out at the rest of us. It looked like she enjoyed the spotlight as she made eye contact with each of us. When her eyes rested on me, her mouth formed an "O" and she smiled even wider. What the heck? Was I going to have to worry about keeping away from her too?
The teacher continued, "Alice, why don't you tell us a bit about yourself?"
She smiled at him and began, "Hi everyone! We just moved here from Alaska. Yes, it was cold and snowy. No, I'm not an Eskimo. Yes, it barely gets dark in the summer and barely gets light in the winter. No, it didn't disrupt my sleeping habits." And with that she moved to the chair that the teacher directed her to, the one next to me.
A different version of that heavenly aroma hit my nose as she sat down. This scent was fluffier, if such a thing could be. It was still nice, but not as nice as the one from earlier. Taking a deep breath and enjoying it anyway, I turned and introduced myself while Mr. Griffen started handing out worksheets to the class.
"Hi, I'm Edward Masen, nice to meet you Alice."
I noticed that her teeth were very white and shiny as she smiled at me in return. "Hi Edward, it's very nice to meet you too." I was concerned when her eyes glazed over for a moment, but then she shook her head and smiled again.
"I think that we are going to be good friends…" She trailed off and turned to look at the teacher when he started to speak.
What? Good friends? Okay, I could always use more good friends. Hopefully since she was in this AP class with me, she did have some brains. I'd just have to wait and see.
When class was over she smiled at me once more and after gathering her things, she practically flew from the room. I could see some disappointment from those that had wanted to talk to the new girl. Ah, the allure of the shiny new toy. Gathering my books, I left the room and headed to my next class, History.
Again one of the new kids was in this class, but this time he wasn't sitting next to me. Mr. Cable didn't make him say anything either. He just said, "Jasper, take that seat over there."
I did feel sorry for him though. He was flanked on either side by Lauren and Jessica. When Lauren reached out and ran her hand down his arm, I thought that he was going to come unglued. The look on his face was intense. I actually felt my own anxiety level spike a bit before a wave of calm flowed out over me. The rest of the class was boring. I couldn't understand how someone could take something as interesting as history and make it a snooze fest.
I saw Jasper gather his things and, just like Alice, he was gone at the first sound of the bell.
My next class didn't have a new kid in it. But everyone was talking about them before it started. Some of them had seen the other three in their classes. Emmett, Rosalie and Bella…
They couldn't get over how gorgeous they were. Even the guys were coming up with words longer than four letters to describe them. That really amazed me. Maybe the new kids would inspire the students to learn something, if only to come up with better words to describe them. Nah, probably not…
Finally it was lunch time and I couldn't wait. That heavenly aroma had wafted by me in the halls a couple more times over the course of the morning. I could finally name a couple of the things that I smelled: strawberries and freesias. And something else that I couldn't even come close to naming. But I sure wanted to immerse myself in it. If it was a perfume, I wanted to buy some. I'd spray it on my pillow at night and just breathe it in. Maybe I could wash my clothes in it. Yes, I've completely lost my mind…
I entered the cafeteria and sniffed deeply. The scent was more intense here. Where was it coming from? Not being able to find it was making me crazy. Tension was rising in me and anticipation too. I felt so twitchy. I tried to shake it off, but couldn't.
Walking through the lunch line with my tray, I decided that the wonderful aroma definitely wasn't from the food. Mystery meat and gravy that looked like glue over fake mashed potatoes. I decided that a limp green salad with some grilled chicken would be the better choice and took an apple for dessert. After paying, I headed towards the table I usually sat at with the team. They were already there and eating. I noticed that one of the tables that usually was empty, was now nearly full. The new kids were all seated there. I recognized Alice and Jasper; she was sitting beside him on the bench seat, nearly in his lap. Well, that would surely put the hussies that I had heard plotting to catch him off stride. Good!
Three others were seated with their backs to me. A huge guy was in the middle with a very curvy blonde tucked close to his right side. On his left I could see a slender girl with long, dark brown hair. The way the first two were sitting made it clear that they were together too. I bet the girls in the school were going nuts. Two new guys and they were already taken. Ha!
Now some of the gossip I heard this morning made sense. Several people had commented on the fact that they were siblings, yet together. But I was sure that I had heard that they were all adopted. Maybe they had said that Jasper and the blonde were twins? Shrugging to myself, I decided it didn't matter. I nodded at my friends and sat down to eat.
Sandi swallowed her bite of apple, no mystery meat for her either, and said, "Well, we might have a replacement for me."
Of course everyone immediately jumped in and said that she could never be replaced. "I know," she said with a cocky smile. "But I spoke with one of the new kids. Alice. She said that she couldn't join the team, but she thought that her sister, Bella, would enjoy it. Apparently she was on a debate team in Alaska. She's the one at their table with the long brown hair." When Sandi had said Bella's name I noticed that the girl to the big guy's left straightened up, not that she had been slouching before, but suddenly her back was even straighter. I couldn't see her face, but I could see Alice and she was grinning, those white teeth showing even more.
Sandi continued, "Edward, Bella's going to be in your biology class next period. You can talk to her then and see if she's the right sort for our team."
We all laughed just a little. The right sort, you mean someone with brains? I know we were all thinking the same thing. It was a running joke amongst us.
"Sure, I'll chat her up in class." As I said the words, the girl, Bella, turned and looked at me over her shoulder, a look of extreme anger on her face. Could she have heard us? Their table was against the windows and two over from us. I didn't think I said anything that should have made her angry. I had only wondered if she had brains. Before I could smile at her she had turned back around to face her family. Alice was still smiling and Jasper was too.
I shook it off and ate my uninspiring salad. The subject of the new kids and whether Bella would be a good fit for the team was dropped as everyone started talking about Halloween. It was juvenile, but the student body still got to dress up for the day. The faculty let it be known that skin would be covered. Yes, the girls could wear French maid costumes, but they had better fit in with the school dress policy. And sex kittens? Well, they had better have enough clothes on too. Jessica had been sent home last year…the principal telling her that just because the amount of faux fur she was wearing would fit on a real kitten, it wasn't enough to appease the dress code.
We really had enjoyed the spectacle of seeing her mother escort her from the premises. When Gary brought it up just now, I thought I heard chuckles come from the Cullens' table. Surely not…
"So, are we all dressing the same again this year?" Angela asked when she could pull her lips from Ben's for a moment. Please, they should just get a room.
"I don't know," said Andrea. "Maybe we should change things around this time. Instead of all dressing like doctors (last year's costume), or lawyers (the year before), maybe this time we could go as cave men and women. You know, meet the median IQ level around here." The silence at our table was deep and shocked for a long moment.
Before any of us could even say anything, a commotion began at the Cullen table. It appeared that Bella was choking, as Emmett pounded her on the back. The rest of her family was laughing at her. That didn't seem very nice to me. Before I could even think beyond, I wonder if she needs help, I heard her voice for the first time.
"Stop it, Emmett, I'm fine," I heard her choke out as she knocked his hand aside.
I focused my attention back at our table. We had all dressed the same for Halloween for years, but this idea of Andrea's was just so out there. But maybe it would be fun…and funny. We weren't just geeks. Well, maybe we were, but we all had a sense of humor too.
"Well, if we go the caveman route, we need to make sure that we have enough clothes on so that we don't get escorted off the school property." Ben tucked Angela closer to his side. "I don't want Newton leering at my Angie." She gave him a syrupy sweet look and another kiss on his lips.
Damn, they were so cute.
"We still have a couple of weeks to decide." Sandi spoke up. "I'm glad that I get a last Halloween with you all before we have to move." Her words stopped the laughter that we had all been sharing.
"Okay, Masen, talk to Bella. See if she's willing to give the team a chance. Well, after you check her out and see if she's got the stuff to even be on the team." Everyone was gathering their lunch debris up as Sandi spoke and I saw Bella sneak another look over at us. At least she didn't look mad anymore.
"I'll do that, Fearless Leader." I snapped off a salute to Sandi as I left the table and dropped my trash into a can on my way out of the room. Gathering my books for the afternoon from my locker I made my way to the science lab. It was Monday and we were going to get to dissect worms today. It wouldn't be new to me as my dad had gotten the team a science kit three summers ago and we had spent a wonderful two weeks dissecting worms, frogs and then a pig. We had all learned a lot and had a blast doing it. At least it wouldn't be a lame lecture or some boring movie.
Mr. Banner had already set up the experiment and the tables were covered with the items we'd need for the lab when I arrived. I moved to my seat at the back of the room. I always sat in the back. The teachers had all figured out that I wasn't a student that they had to keep their eyes on, so sat me away from them, leaving room for the trouble makers at the front. Mike Newton was always in the front. That little fact of life always made me laugh.
I wondered which seat Mr. Banner would put Bella in. My lab partner had dropped the course last week. Erik Yorkie hadn't realized that he'd have to dissect things and when Mr. Banner announced it last Thursday, he had nearly fainted…and then dropped the class. There were a couple of other seats empty as this class wasn't that full. So no telling where she would sit.
Getting out my pen and journal for the class I was suddenly assailed by that aroma again. My heart clenched and I took in a deep breath. It was intoxicating. I could only imagine that this is what an addict felt when he took a hit of pot, or acid…or heroin. It was everything. I drew in another, deeper, breath. Heaven filled my lungs as my eyes closed in ecstasy. I gripped the table, trying to tether myself to something.
I heard a soft gasp come from beside me and opened my eyes. Golden eyes looked deeply into my own. As I sucked another breath in, I realized that she was the source of this fragrance that filled my soul with longing.
We spoke at the same time, "It's you!"
A/N.....those who leave reviews get a teaser for the next chapter....
Not bribery...just something I thought you'd like to know.
Thanks for reading!