Desperate For A Grip

JPOV

She disappeared into the black waters below, the vest she wore billowing in the wind. My paws scuttled to a stop at the edge of the cliff, a few stones loosening themselves and dropping into the ocean along with the redheaded bloodsucker.

I stepped back, away from the cliff, slowly shaking my head from side to side. She'd gotten away again. The water was the only advantage she'd had. I was so close, and she'd gone into the water.

The torrential downpour crashed into the dirt around me, turning it into a sloppy slew of mud.

Just then, a piercing scream seared the treacherous air. There was a splash, and I froze. I was so overcome with horrible fear that I phased back into human form. The rain whipped about my skin so steadily and violently, I staggered.

Bella.

Bella.

NO!

Without thinking, I ran toward where I'd last heard her, searching the dark waves below frantically for her form.

No, no, no. Why would she do this?

A hand. I caught a glimpse of a hand, and then a wave slashed it beneath the waves.
Without a logical thought to my name, I threw myself off the cliff, into the waters, after her.

White waves beat me from side to side. I shook the water from my hair, trying to get my bearings. With strong strokes, I swam parallel to the shore, searching the water for her. Something soft stroked my leg, and I reached down.

My hand swept through a few locks of her silky hair, and I wrapped my grasp around them, desperate for a grip on her.

Another wave crashed over us, and I lost my grip.

A growl escaped my lips, and I shoved myself under water, ignoring the freezing numbness it should have brought my body.

I forced my eyes to stay peeled beneath the water. Silver bubbles churned and obscured my view so that I could barely make out a thing.

Bella's body was limp and floated into the desolate darkness below. Frantically, I pushed myself toward her, locking a hand around her wrist.

With all of my strength, I pulled us both toward the surface.

Gasping for air myself, I yanked her head above water, slapping at her back, trying to dislodge some of the water that had inevitably made its way into her lungs.

Her lips were blue, and her face was unnaturally pale. Her hair had wrapped itself around her neck like a noose, but I couldn't worry about that now. It wasn't doing any damage as far as I could see.

I didn't know how I did it, but somehow I managed to drag us both back to the shore.

Pulling her up into my arms, I nearly stumbled away from the waves, and then laid her on the rocky shore.

I began CPR—two breaths every thirty compressions.

When she began to breathe again, I helped her into a viable sitting position, and slapped at her back in an attempt to beat the water from her lungs.

"Breathe, Bella!" I shouted mindlessly, slapping her back with enough force to dislodge torrents of water from her lungs. She choked it out through her nose and mouth.

In disorientation, her eyes searched the livid purple clouds above my face. Rain poured needle-like over her skin, and I leaned above her, trying to shield her as well as I could.

"Bella?" I asked, resting my palm to her frigid cheek, "Bells, honey, can you hear me?"

Bleak and empty, her gaze penetrated mine.

"How long has she been unconscious?" I suddenly heard Sam call from behind me.

"I don't know," I replied, smoothing hair from her cheeks, "A few minutes? It didn't take long to tow her to the beach."

"She's breathing. She'll come around," Sam assured me as I stared anxiously into Bella's still face again. She'd closed her eyes again. "We should get her out of the cold, though. I don't like the color she's turning…"

"You think it's okay to move her?" I fretted, examining the blue tint Bella's skin was taking on. Every breath she struggled to take wheezed in and out of her lungs. Her chest rose and fell evenly.

"She didn't hurt her back or anything when she fell?" Sam inquired.

"I don't know," I admitted.

Her eyes opened again, with much more purpose and clarity this time.

"Jake?" she croaked, the words scraping dry and raw from her throat.

"Oh!" I sighed in relief, tears springing to my eyes. "Oh, Bella! Are you okay? Can you hear me? Do you hurt anywhere?"

"J-just m-my throat," she managed to get out through chattering teeth.

"Let's get you out of here, then," I decided, and lifted her from the craggy beach. I loped back up toward the road, away from the roiling, cruel waves behind us, my heart pounding against Bella's lifeless, chilled body.

Her head lolled over my arm, and she stared vacantly, almost longingly back at the waves that crashed and writhed along the shore.