Amanda had been working for the Volturi for a few months now. Most people would have found her choice of…profession to be lacking in common sense. It might have seemed that way but curiosity had always been what had driven her. Upon finding out that there was this whole different world that humans were so oblivious to, she couldn't help herself. She begged and pleaded and instead of killing her, they offered her a job. She saw these amazing, godlike beings around her all the time. Moving in blurs, talking faster than she could make out, like living marble sculptures. As much as there was a part of her that wanted to be one, it was observing them that made her get up in the morning and literally face her possible death every day with a smile.
However, facing the possibility of death and actually dying are two completely different things. The moment that she felt the flesh of her neck tear and the blood gush out of her neck, she knew she was dead. She was near at least 10 vampires just in this room, not counting the Volturi through the door. There was just no possible way she was going to bleed out or get taken to a hospital. This was it. Even if it wasn't for the massive blood loss, she couldn't run or hide. She'd barely get a step from her desk. She'd seen how fast they can move and how easily they can turn primal to fleeing prey. And as she looked around, all she saw were hungry vampires, and that was when the pain started. She had been in pain anyway, but she felt her head get jerked to the side and then it was from another source entirely. She was getting bitten. Looking up, she could see it was one of the new vampires visiting. The pretty one with the weird eyes who had brought the little hybrid girl with her. Even as she was being killed by her, Amanda marveled at her feral beauty. It was such an odd sensation. Amanda wanted to scream but she couldn't. She wanted to beg for mercy again. But she could tell from the wild look in Bella's eyes that even if the words could have come out, they would have fallen on deaf ears. She was going to die. The only consolation she had was that it would probably be quick. After all, she doubted that only one vampire would be feeding from her for long…
As for Bella, she was in an almost gleeful ecstasy. If there were any doubt that twins or triplets in this case tasted similarly, it was proved at that moment. As the crimson liquid flowed between her lips, it was like the delicious taste was going all through her body. It was all encompassing. Bella was brought back to that moment in the park, but without the negative connotations. All that existed in this world was the blood. That delicious blood. And she drank it deeply, knowing that she wouldn't be able to for long. There were too many Cullens, not to mention the other vampires. She barely had time to drink the first time when it was only Rosalie and Emmett trying to stop her.
That might have been what put her on edge in the first place. No one was actually trying to stop her. There was enough curiosity about this that she broke from her feeding only to see all of her family laid out on the ground. Meanwhile, Edward was overlooking the scene with a cocky smirk curved along his lips.
It was Alec. His power was the only thing that could have taken all of them out like that. Bella had left them completely defenseless. She'd brought them all into this danger, and then had forsaken them when they needed her the most. That was enough to pull her away from the blood. She had to. There wasn't any other option. Amanda slid limply to the ground as Bella reformed her shield around her family.
In almost synchronized blurs, the Cullens regained their senses, standing up again. They blinked rapidly, adjusting to having their sight back. It must have been horrible. Trapped inside a senseless place with no clue what was going on. Without knowing whether they were being burned alive or ripped apart. Completely alone in their own heads. Bella had never felt more ashamed. Before she could mount something resembling an apology, Edward spoke up, that irritating smirk still on his face.
"They were in no danger, Miss Swan." He insisted. "I only wished to make amends. You wanted her so badly. And she was only a human. We can get more. I figured you wouldn't want to be…interrupted."
Bella glared. If it were that simple, he'd have actually offered Amanda to her and she, of course, would have declined. That was nothing more than a setup. Whether it was to embarrass her or to show her that they weren't so different, the ending goal was obviously for his entertainment. And Bella refused to be a spectacle. "Thank you very much for the consideration but-"
Alice, Jasper, and Edward were the first to look, but everyone's attention was suddenly drawn to the gurgled screams on the floor under the receptionist's desk.
"IT BURNS!" They were able glean from Amanda's words.
"Huh…" Edward exhaled, obviously as surprised as everyone else that Amanda wasn't dead yet. Her heart had definitely stopped. But apparently there was just enough life in her for the transformation to start taking hold.
"MAKE IT STOP!"
Bella slowly turned to Alice, who nodded, knowing what Bella wanted to know. "She'll turn."
Bella gasped again, her horror momentarily overriding her hunger as it sunk in that she just made a vampire.
Edward shrugged. "I'm sure we'll find a use for her. Unless…" He trailed off, looking at the Cullens, Bella especially. "You want to take her. You'd have to wait three days to do so of course. Can't subtly carry a screaming, bleeding, nearly dead girl out of here after all."
Bella's eyes bulged. Everyone was looking at her like it was her decision. Was that some kind of twisted vampire etiquette? You bite it, you bought it? There wasn't really a choice, however, no matter what Edward inferred. As much as she hated the idea of biting her and leaving her, Bella couldn't stay there another three days. Not with Edward or any other mind games he'd come up with in that time. What would she even say to Amanda when she woke up?
'Sorry I bit and killed you like that. It wasn't entirely my fault. You just smelled really good. Also I killed your triplet. If I ever meet your last sister, I'll probably kill her too. Would you like to live with me and learn how to be a vampire and not the royals you voluntarily chose to work for?'
It was completely absurd, even without the sarcasm. "I'm sure she's in good hands." Bella forced a cordial smile, which Edward returned, motioning to Heidi to take care of the borderline suicidal girl on the floor in a puddle of her own blood. Her screams seemed to remind the vampires of when they turned. The all consuming burn that you'd do anything to stop. It's always one of the few human memories that sticks in your vampire mind. It's another of the things you retain from being human. You always remember pain.
It was a quiet walk back outside. Edward gave them a 'sincere' send off, letting them know they were always welcome to visit. After that, they were finally free of the Volturi, or at least as much as a vampire can be free from them in Volterra. Things were starting to blur to Bella again. She was mentally and spiritually exhausted. It was times like this that she wished vampires could sleep. She desperately wanted everything to just…stop.
She didn't want Alice and Jasper's silent 'I told you so' expressions, especially since that was literally the case. She didn't want the blend of fury and concern on Rosalie's face. She didn't even want the worry and understanding from Carlisle and Esme. And most of all, she didn't want to deal with Nessie's dead expression as she tried to sort out what had just happened. The bruise on her neck was fading slowly. Their vampire eyesight could make out that she was definitely healing faster than a human, but the fact that she was bruised at all, much less that her father was the cause, was weighing down on the group as they politely didn't acknowledge it.
The wolves, however, weren't as subtle. "NESSIE!" Jacob and Seth yelled as they saw purple splotches on Nessie's neck.
"Ow!" Renesmee hissed, her voice slightly raspier than usual, batting away the large hands trying to touch her neck. "It's sore!"
"How…did…it happen?" Jacob growled. His muscles were bulging unnaturally, and he was vibrating a little. Seth wasn't quite as bad but he was getting there.
"Guys, I appreciate the wolfy testosterone, but chill your shit. We're in public, and I really don't want to have to go back there after you guys commit suicide by Volturi." Nessie muttered, ripping some of the frills off of her top and quickly turning it into a makeshift scarf to cover the bruises.
"So the Volturi did this?" Seth growled, his usual light-hearted demeanor momentarily clouded by fury.
"Edward did it." Bella spoke up. "He was trying to provoke me into attacking so the Volturi would have an excuse to kill all of us."
Jacob's eyes bulged as turned to respond to Bella. It took her a second to realize what it was that was making the wolves gawk at her. Her red eyes were giving her away.
There was an awkward pause as all the information was sinking in. Renesmee took advantage of this, pulling both wolves' shirts down, forcing them down to her level. "We did something stupid. We fucked up. Shit went down and it royally blew up in our face. Let. It. Go. For now. I'll heal. Everything else is just details."
Jacob and Seth looked at each other and then back to Nessie. You didn't need to be a mind reader to see all the problems that were going on with the vamps right now. It was all just painfully awkward.
"How'd you guys get here so fast, anyway?" Renesmee asked, exhaustedly.
"Well…" Jacob started, "When you have way too much money, one personal jet isn't enough for you."
"Well next time we'll leave you behind!" Rosalie snapped.
"That's what I thought." Renesmee interrupted before Jacob could respond back. "Good. So you guys have another plane. You were planning on going home with everyone anyway, right Mom?"
Bella snapped out of her self loathing enough to ponder her daughter's thought process with that question. "What…?...Why?"
"Because I'm not going back with you." Nessie responded, flatly. "I need to get away. I just need some time to myself. And by myself, I mean with these two." She motioned to the confused wolves.
"What?" Seth blanked. "Where are we even going?"
"Somewhere that isn't Italy or Forks." Nessie grumbled. "Name a place."
"Huh? I don't know!" Seth fidgeted, uncomfortably, obviously not liking being put the spot like that.
"Come on!" Nessie pressured. "Just name a fucking country. It's not rocket science."
"I don't know…" He rolled his eyes. "Japan…?"
Nessie contemplated the answer and gave an approving nod. "Awesome. Japan it is."
"Do you even know Japanese?" Jacob asked, exasperated.
"And you know Italian?" Nessie raised a skeptical eyebrow. When Jacob tried to retort and couldn't think of one, Renesmee flashed him a toothy grin. "I'll learn some on the flight."
She then turned to look around, her eyes beaming when she found a taxi. "Per favore, mi porti all'aeroporto."
The cab driver blinked for second, not only catching up the sudden hail, but to the one doing it. "Ah….si signorina."
Nessie impatiently motioned for Jacob and Seth to get in the cab.
"Nessie…" Jacob started, "I can't just-"
"We'll get Leah over there as soon as we can, okay? I promise. And don't give me some shit about you needing to get back, because you already left and Sam will be just fine with the pack. Now get your body builder looking ass in the damn car."
Jacob looked dumbfounded and turned to Seth, who was already getting in the cab and gave Jacob a defeated shrug. "Don't look at me. You spoiled her way before I did."
There was a long pause before Jacob just glared at Nessie, who smiled back. "It's cute when you try to tell me no, knowing the futility." She motioned to the cab once more, which Jacob begrudgingly got in, grumbling under his breath.
"Nessie?" Bella finally spoke up. This was all happening so fast.
It was the obvious pain on her face that really stopped Nessie. "Geeze, Mom. It's not like I'm leaving forever. Just a few weeks, tops. I just need to put some shit in perspective." She gave Bella an obviously much needed hug. "I love you. Promise to keep in touch."
Bella merely stared as the cab sped away. She was distracted when she felt Rosalie's hand on her shoulder. "She's not running away from you."
"Sure feels that way…" Bella mumbled, getting another hug from her girlfriend. "I'm sorry…"
"I know." Rosalie ran her fingers through Bella's hair. "You're still going to get the tsunami of my unfettered wrath when we get home…but for now…hugs."
Bella let out a weak chuckle. "Hugs are good."
"Hey!" Rosalie hissed as Alice joined the hug.
"What?" Alice grinned. "It would have been a lot harder to join in after-," Her words were immediately cut off as the three vampires were squished as Emmett joined the hug and like everything, made a contest out of it.
"We're…starting to draw attention to ourselves…" Carlisle calmly pointed out. "Maybe we should head to the hotel?"
Bella tried to respond, but there was no air to allow anything she said to be heard. The embrace of death was finally ended, and she nodded in agreement, giving one last somber look to the castle before they hailed a cab themselves.
(A/N: And here we have it. Just to give you guys a heads up, this story is pretty much split into three sections in my head. There's the introduction, the second section, which I lovingly call 'The Shitsplosion', where the real problem goes down, and the third section, 'It's on now, bitch!' or simply Revenge, for those wanting the less profanity version. This chapter marks the end of the introduction. I can't say sorry enough for the people who might be frustrated with the frequency of the chapters. I'm doing what I can. As always, I appreciate everyone who sticks with me.
Speaking of which, I'll leave the next option up to you guys. I'm planning on working on another of my ongoing stories so it'll probably be a bit before I get back to this one. Not stupidly long like usual but it won't be the next thing I work on. I'm trying to do a few back to back chapters for each story just so I feel like I'm doing more I guess. Anyway, I'd figure here's a good place for a break unless you wanted me to do one more chapter before I work on something else. However, I can guarantee the next chapter will end on a cliffhanger whereas this one didn't…for the most part.
Oh, also, I know no Italian. That was Googled information so if one of you knows Italian and I did that translation wrong, let me know and I'll fix it.)