Alright, this has taken a while. I'm sorry about that; I've been starting and restarting other projects. I have a nasty tendency to rewrite everything over and over again. So I've decided to merge chapters 26 and 27 together to make up for it. We only have the epilogue left. Thank you for your patience.
It looks like has decided to force anonymous reviews on us. This is a tad annoying so I'm going to enact a policy on this. In protest I am going to delete all anonymous posts, no exceptions. I'm sorry to any legitimate anonymous posters but I have to assert my control over my own stories. This site shouldn't have the ability to override my decisions. If you want to review then create an account or use the one you refused to sign into. This way I can reply to you right away, I can't do that to anonymous reviews.
To Aqua girl 007:
Thanks, I'm glad you like it.
I have some story ideas but I haven't decided yet. I'm not sure if the idea I end up choosing will be one of the ideas that I'm thinking of. Things change so quickly these days. I just hope that my delivery is better than my brainstorming.
To PanteraFenix Negra:
Thanks. Your grammar is very hard to read, I hope I've read it right. Yes, I really have "exploded" as my mother calls it. I prefer to call it pacing. I haven't banged my head in years, I try to take good care of it, but it has happened. My family is accepting, as long as I don't do anything harmful to myself or others they will be fine with my actions.
To those trying to reply to spunkransomloverr:
I've already spoken to him/her, it was a misunderstanding: s/he just didn't read the author's notes. This is why you shouldn't guest review, so I can correct you right away with a PM.
The drive to the airport was quick. I'm genuinely surprised that I haven't felt anxious at least once. It's most likely the result of Jasper constantly keeping me calm as I doubt I could do it myself. This is good; this might just prevent him from feeling any new anxieties. Jasper is helping me trick him without realising it. At least I hope it works that way.
I waited until Alice went to check us in. Now there was at least a ten person wall between her and us. I decided that this is my only chance. The location was perfect, I was in the right spot and so was everyone else. I told Jasper I needed to use the bathroom. This plan hinged on getting away from Alice, as she didn't let me enter a public bathroom without her. Jasper was less paranoid, or at least willing to obey the law. He did wait outside the door though.
I had been to this bathroom once before when I was younger. It had an interesting quirk that I didn't see in a lot of places: it had two doors. Both lead to an entirely different part of the airport. I was once separated from mom for nearly a half hour because of this.
Fortunately the bathroom wasn't empty; this should cover my sounds well enough. I left quickly because Alice probably wouldn't be long. The line she was in wasn't that short to begin with.
I left the airport immediately and approached a cab that had just dropped someone off. I told the driver my old address and we were off.
I was surprisingly calm about this. I had been calm before but now I was without Jasper. I know from experience that his power wears off quickly if you leave the room he's in. I hope he's not following me. I shouldn't expect that, it will only add a false sense of security. I'm more worried about not being worried than anything else. It might be my fear of depression talking. I don't want to be depressed.
We arrived at my house and I rushed inside after telling the driver to wait. I fully expected to be ambushed by Alice at this point so I had to hurry. I found the note next to the phone. I quickly scanned the hallway on the way out. I couldn't find any sign of a struggle.
I told the driver to bring me to the address given on the note. I had a feeling that I knew where it would take me.
Panic filled me; my calmness wore off one the drive. I just knew I was going to get caught. It's been too long for me to have gone unnoticed. It's easily been a half hour since I left the airport. I should have started wearing a watch. Now I feared death. I knew I was going to die. Maybe mom wouldn't, maybe he'd keep his word, or have to courtesy to wait until after killing me before breaking it. Maybe he'd spare her. Maybe he wouldn't be able to. Vampires are animalistic when hungry. Mom wouldn't want me to do this. I'm sorry I did this, I know what you'd say about this. I have to try and help her, even if I live to regret this.
Before long we arrived at my old ballet studio. I was right, Alice was right. At least they'll know where to find me.
I paid the driver and he drove off.
I was worried that Alice and Jasper got here first and mom was already dead. No one came out to meet me so there's some hope.
I approached the door to find it unlocked. I entered the dark building.
I went down the short and forgotten hallways. I knew where he'd be. I hadn't forgotten where my class was held. I wish I had, I wish I could get lost but there simply wasn't anywhere to get lost. It's not a very big place.
Then I heard it.
"Bella? Where are you?!" It was mom.
I ran towards the voice, it was where I thought it would be: my old classroom. "I'm here mommy!" I called out; not caring about stealth, there was no hiding from him.
I ran towards the closet in the back. It was the only place she could be in such an empty place. That's when I heard something else. "I'm here mommy." It was me, when I was younger. Then I saw the television. It was an old home movie; I had wandered off when my mom's back was turned. I was only gone for a second but it was enough. I guess the moral of the story is 'don't leave your mother's side or a murderous vampire will use the footage of it to lure you into a trap and kill you in 10 years'. I honestly didn't see that coming.
I had to laugh a little; it was a very humourless laugh. It only lasted a second but it conveyed my emotional state perfectly. I was both relieved and angry with myself. This is both what I wanted to happen and what I didn't. My mom was safe but I was an idiot. Mom's cell phone was old and had bad speakers so I didn't notice anything off about the recording, I had no reason to, because I was used to this sort of static. I did nothing wrong and everything wrong. I acted rationally and didn't ask if I could speak to her again because most kidnappers would just make you listen to them hurting their hostage. I knew that. If I had known less I might have gotten out of this. I couldn't ask Alice and Jasper for help because I knew they would never agree with my plan B. There was no way to guarantee my safety from them or James. Vampires cannot be trusted to fight and be careful, Edward told me that. I knew this too. If I hadn't thought this through I would have asked them and wouldn't be in this mess. But that would have risked my mom's life. No matter how I look at it this was inevitable. As soon as James called me this was set in stone. The only way I could have avoided this is if I never wandered away from mom 10 years ago. But I would have needed to see the future to do that. I was out manoeuvred by circumstance.
Now I felt relieved and satisfied. All anger left me. I didn't feel cheated, I lost a fair fight and no one got hurt but me. Except for Edward, or the Cullens, or mom, or dad, they'd be hurt. Really, a lot of people will be hurt when they find out I died. I hope the Cullens can come up with a good story for that. Maybe a car crash, a robbery gone bad, murder… suicide. That's what this was, sort of. There's not a lot of other ways to describe agreeing to meet a vampire alone anywhere. This is not the first time I've done this but this time death was a certainty and not just a possibility.
I closed the closet door and went to sit on a bench. That is when he spoke up.
"There, she's fine. Aren't you glad no one else is involved?" James asked as he approached. I didn't see him when I came in, I don't know if I just missed him or if he was hiding. It doesn't matter really.
I nodded. He was right about that.
He walked over to a table and opened a laptop. He set up a webcam. "I want to get this on tape. I want to leave something for your boyfriend to see. I want to play as the mouse this time. I want a challenge, a good fight." He explained. "Not that this was easy, I can honestly say I thought I'd lost. It was a desperate gambit to arrange this meeting. I honestly didn't think you'd lose them." He sounded impressed
"Neither did I." I replied, I felt confident. This is the kind of confidence under pressure I've only experienced in job interviews. I don't know where it comes from but it's nice. I wanted to talk to him, but I also wanted him to get this over with before my confidence wears off. "The circumstances just worked out perfectly."
"I'd love to have seen it. I'm sure it was interesting." He said as he grabbed a chair.
"It wasn't anything to watch." I replied, trying not to break eye contact.
"I honestly didn't think the recording would fool you." He said while leaning back, occasionally glancing at the monitor. It seems to be taking a while to turn on, must be windows.
"My mom has a bad phone; I'm honestly surprised I didn't notice it was too clear."
"I guess circumstances were on my side too. It really was a challenge." The web cam lit up, it must be on. "But I'd only ever lost once. You know her actually." Now I was interested.
"Yes, your short friend, I once hunted encountered her in an asylum a century ago. One of the workers was a vampire who liked her a little too much. He hid her and I guess he turned her." Alice was a mystery to the Cullens, and to herself.
"What happened to him?"
"Killed him, but he put up a good fight, enough to finish the transformation evidently. It wasn't as fun as this, though. Seven vampires is a challenge even I can't face. That's why it will be so much fun after; I'll pick the ones who follow me off one by one. It will be a real game, real danger, and real risk." He got up. "It was fun Isabella. You won too. Beating me was impossible, it wasn't the goal. Escaping your friends was the real game. And your prize will is a quick death. I won't torture you, I only need your death to get them after me" He was in front of me now. I stood up. I had an urge to thank him but a quick death is hardly a gift. He grabbed my hand and I closed my eyes and held my head up.
I felt peace.
Then I felt Hell.
That is the only name for this feeling.
Then I hit my head. I opened my eyes and saw that I was on the other side of the room. Then I saw a blur near me, and then another blur pushed the blur away from me. Now my leg looked funny. I couldn't feel anything other than my hand. My head was pounding and I think I'm covered in glass. This was his idea of not torturing me? I shouldn't be surprised; I had no reason to believe him.
Should I try to get away? I don't think I can move. I think I can see one of my legs moving but I had to close my eyes and hold back a scream. I grabbed my wrist then moved down my arm and squeezed with all my strength. I was trying to force my arm to go numb. It didn't seem to work.
Then I heard it "Bella, it's alright." The voice was high pitched but I couldn't be sure if that wasn't a side effect of my head injury. "We'll make it better. Carlisle, do you have anything?"
"I don't carry morphine around with me; we'll just have to make do." Another voice said. I couldn't put names to faces for some reason; I don't think I tried to.
"Carlisle, her hand!" Yet another voice said.
"This isn't good." Something removed my other hand and took its place, it was squeezing tighter. "I don't know what to do."
There was a slight pause. "Can't you do it?!" The voice was panicky.
"I don't know if it will even work!" The voice was louder this time.
"We have to do something! We don't have time!"
"It's your choice, but I can't say any of them are perfect."
"I'm sorry Bella, I'll make it better" Now something else had my hand, something was happening. I tried to look and saw Edward with his mouth on my hand. The pain stopped spreading. The arm grabbing me tightened its grip, it's too tight to be comfortable but I'm just glad I could feel anything now.
"Alright Edward that's enough, her arm is almost dry. Stop!" I felt better. My leg didn't feel right though, it really hurt. It dulled though, everything dulled.
Everything went black.
This turned out better that I expected. There were a lot of rewrites but I'm happy with it now. It's a bit shorter than it was going to be but I think it flows better now. It was simply too slow and awkward to read before.
Only the Epilogue is left. I hope I get it done before the week is out but I do not want to promise anything.
Thank you all for your patience with this, I promise to finish all of my future projects before posting them from now on.