It had been 2 years, 4 months, and 3 days since I had gone home. Forks was a haunting place. So many memories left standing – waiting, hoping – for my return. Memories of Edward's last words in the forest brought back a faint pain – a pain that I had long forgotten. I was getting closer to his goal.

"It will be as if I never existed."

Well, Edward, it has been 3 years and some odd days since you uttered those God forsaken words, and it's just now to the point where I'm hoping you never really did exist. I was finally to the point where his hurtful words angered me. They no longer haunted me. They no longer threatened my being. I would never forget those utterly obtrusive words, but I could forget the pain they brought behind them.

The pain I had felt in the beginning was masked by Jacob. Now, there was no one else to shelter the pain with. I simply had to do it myself.

Jacob. I sighed.

We had made a great team. He was perfect for me – loyal, trustworthy, protective. Jake was my best friend. I knew he loved me. I loved him as a friend – or at least that's what I told myself. I wasn't in the shape or right state of mind to give Jake what he deserved. He deserved someone who was at least there in body and mind. And in the beginning I wasn't.

About a year after Edward's gut wrenching words were spoken and Jake was still around as persistent as ever, I realized that maybe my feelings for him delved a little deeper. Maybe this was how it was supposed to be - Bella and Jake together and happy in Forks – forever. And it was that way for a while. We started dating not too long before I graduated high school. Jake was of course smug and elated, and I was no more than thrilled to not have that gaping hole in my chest.

Honestly, I really never thought I would fall in love with Jake, but it was easier than I thought. I remember the night I realized I was already in love with the most beautiful person I'd ever seen. We were at First Beach on our driftwood bench just sitting there listening to the waves crash to shore. Jakes arm protectively draped around my shoulders at the same time keeping the cool brisk wind from freezing me to the core. Jake had told me he loved me before, but never in this setting. And never did he say it the way he did that night.

"Are you cold?" He kindly asked tightening his grip on me.

"As if I could be cold around you Jake? I think not." I smirked."You're like my own personal space heater."

"Just making sure," he fidgeted in his seat.

I raised my eyebrow at him and cocked my head to the side."Uncomfortable?"

Jacob merely gave me a mocked half laugh and fidgeted again. "No, Bella, I'm fine. Just a bit nervous I guess."

If there was one thing I knew about Jacob Black, it was that he was never nervous around me especially now that we were a… couple. He trusted me with his secret. I trusted him with my life though I had vowed to never do so in my life ever again after Edward. But, this was Jacob. It only seemed natural.

"Nervous," I questioned in a shocked tone.

"Yeah," he whispered.

"Jake, why are you nervous? It's just me and you, Jacob and Bella. This is how it's supposed to be remember?" I tried to remind him of the obvious, but I had to admit that, now, he was making me a bit nervous about him being nervous. I frowned and he seemed to notice right away.

"Bells," he swallowed hard and smirked. "It's nothing bad, okay? No frowning."

I simply nodded not really believing him. Why should I? It hadn't been that long since Edward had uttered those stupid filthy words to me after promising me that I was his only reason to live – as if vampires had souls. Obviously, if he did have one, it had been vanquished away that night with the way he left me in the woods, alone, at night. I cringed and a shiver went down my spine at the thought.

Jake pulled me tighter to his chest and I laid my cheek against it. He rested his chin on the top of my head. His lips faintly left a kiss on my hair sending a warm feeling running through my veins.

"Wanna walk," he questioned after noticing my shivering had stopped. I didn't let on that it had only been because I thought of that heartbreaking ass. So, I amused him…just a little.

"Yeah. I'm warm now. Thanks." I planted a tender kiss on his cheek. Jake's jaw clenched as my lips left his cheek. His palm caught my cheek before my face was too far from his. I glanced up into the liquid abyss I'd gotten lost in so many times over the past few weeks. He flexed his jaw once more, and lifted his gaze to mine. This time was no different than any other, and I was soon lost in the intensity of his warm and beautiful stare. It was as though he was reading my soul through the little brown seas of my eyes. I breathed out slowly.

His thumb gently traced circles on my cheek. A smile crept across his beautiful full lips almost waning me from my stare, but I didn't budge. I was utterly lost in the being sitting next to me. A smile spread across my lips just as his disappeared. His face transformed into a serious version of my Jacob. That's when I knew he had me.

And just as the feeling spread into the vacant hole where my heart used to be, he lowered his head bringing his lips eerily close to mine. My eyes fluttered shut on their own accord waiting in anticipation for the taste of him to take my breath away. After a few moments without as much as a gentle graze of his lips, I slowly opened my eyes. He didn't smile. He didn't move. All he did was stare into my eyes – reaching deep inside of me and dragging out the soul I thought I had given away.

His lips tenderly grazed mine, and left a small hint of a kiss on them. A shock of warmth ran throughout my body exciting it to the max. Who knew that Jacob Black to do this to me without so much as a simple graze of his lips. I noticed him clenching his jaw together again, before he spoke as softly as the wind.

"Bella." My name came out like a breathless moan.

"Jake." I almost whimpered trying to will him to say those words I don't think I've ever wanted to hear someone say those words so bad. It wasn't so much as a want, but suddenly, it became a need.I needed to hear those three little words.

"Koo cloak lay," he whispered ever so gently.

What did that even mean? I asked myself. My eyebrows furrowed a little.

"Stay with me forever," his deep voice breathed.

I could almost see the words materialize in the air as they left his lips and floated into me. In that moment, I knew I was Jacob Black's forever. I felt myself drifting into him – a pull that was beyond my control. From this day on, I would never look back. I could love only him. And, before I could breathe again, I heard him whisper the sweetest sound into my lips.

"I am in love with you, Bella Swan. So, in love with you." His lips crashed into mine with a fierceness and demand. I couldn't hold back. I couldn't think with the hazy feeling coming over me. There was no outside thought. There was only Bella and Jacob.

His lips pulled slowly away from mine, but still lingered a breath away. I wanted him to kiss me again. I wanted to feel him fill every part of me. I needed Jacob now more than I ever needed him before, and that scared me.

My heart pounded in my chest, and I swallowed thickly. His large hands rested on both sides of my neck. A smirk slid across his full lips. I was sure he could feel my heart pounding through my neck or at least see it through my chest. I think, it was then that Jacob knew I was head over heels in love with him, but I couldn't just let him say that to me without me saying something back.

I chewed the corner of my lip, and became unattractively nervous. My knee began to shake on its own. I twisted my fingers together, and I'm pretty sure I twitched just a little. Jake pressed his lips to mine again softly leaving small tender kisses all over them as he tried to kiss away the nervous feeling coming between us. I tried to breathe, but it was catching in my throat. Jacob began tracing a line up and down the front of my throat with his thumbs as if coaxing the air to my lungs. That small sentiment, that small knowing he had, had me jumping right off of the edge. The words poured out of my mouth effortlessly.

"I love you, Jacob." I whimpered softly trying to remember to breathe. "I am in love with you Jake."

For the first time, my lips devoured his furiously and feverishly leading us into a deeper state of want. I nipped at his bottom lip with my teeth and sucked it between my lips lightly. A soft growl settled in his chest. Jacob's large hands trailed their way quickly to my hips. He grasped them tightly and yanked me onto his lap. He knew he wouldn't hurt me –I loved that feeling. My legs locked around his hips, and I pulled myself as close to him as I could get without taking my clothes off.

Jacob's lips fought for control over my own, but I wasn't willing to give up that easily. His tongue trailed my bottom lip before I let my own tongue loose. I licked at his tongue and drew it between my lips where I began to suck softly. A loud growling moan parted his lips and he pressed his hips into mine. He was losing this battle, and he knew it.

"Jake," I moaned softly at the feel of his excitement between my legs.

Jacob smiled feverishly at me. He bucked his hips softly as his fingers trailed slowly under the hem of my shirt. He tenderly left a small trail of kisses on my neck. His lips stopping at my jaw to nip and bite before he kissed my lips ever so softly. His fingers grazed the edge of my bra causing a low moan to escape my lips. I needed him now. I wanted him now.

Then, he kissed me tenderly on the cheek and smiled with a hint of blush on his cheeks. Did I do something wrong? I mean, Edward and I hadn't exactly gone this far before, but Jake and I had.

"Not here," he whispered sweetly into my ear and planted a small kiss on my ear lobe. "As much as I want you," he pressed his hips against mine again. I gasped for air. "Just not here. Not like this."

That night was the night that I fell in love with Jacob Black. Soon, he became a part of my everyday life. We were the same Jacob and Bella just a litte more close with quite a few more kisses. We saw each other nearly every day. When he wasn't visiting me at Charlie's, then I was visiting him at Billy's. If by some small chance neither of us could get away from whatever was going on to see the other, we would talk on the phone for hours.

But, most of the time, we spent in his garage. I watched him fix whatever he had at the time, but mostly he worked on the Rabbit. He only let me help once he had thoroughly explained to me what it was I needed to do. Usually I didn't like to help him, but there were times when I didn't want to leave, and I knew helping Jake fix whatever it was would give me more time with him. I almost felt guilty for spending so much time with him. He always seemed so tired. Between me, the pack, school, and Billy, he wasn't getting much sleep. So, whenever I could bare to not see him for a day or so, I'd call and spout out as many "I love you's" as I could in a half hour and let him get rest.

Jake usually didn't seem to mind being spread so thin, but he wouldn't have said so if it did bother him. He'd rather lose time with the pack or not finish his homework, then to miss any time he got with me. On the days, I would demand he need sleep, we would argue. The arguments usually got pretty heated what with his werewolf temper and my stubbornness. One of us would hang up on the only to call back a few hours later once settled down. He'd usually apologize even if I was being stubborn, and then get off of the phone for some much needed rest.

I'm not too sure what his problem was with me trying to give him time to sleep, but I had a pretty good idea. He was worried Edward would appear back in my life. He still feared my leaving him for Edward. I didn't blame him, because at the time, I wasn't so sure that I wouldn't leave Jake for Edward. With Edward, it was different. He offered so much. Where with Jake, there was only so much he could offer. And I think Jake knew that. He didn't want to hold me back by any means, but he didn't want to lose me either which only caused more trouble than need be.

To sum it up, the time Jacob and I had together was very passionate and full of so much love. Maybe we loved each other too much or maybe I was just too much like my Mom, but after a stint at the local community college, I soon realized that this was not what I wanted. By "this", I mean Forks,the community college, never getting out into the world to really experience anything besides this cold, wet, rainy town. And then one day, the sudden realization hit me that if I didn't want Forks, then I couldn't have Jake – so maybe Jacob and Bella weren't meant for forever.

The moment I realized this was a rainy afternoon in La Push. Jake had skipped school to spend time with me. I tried to not get angry, because at the time, we hadn't been seeing much of each other. He was stretched to the max with the pack, Billy had been sick, school was nearing finals, and Jake was getting ready to graduate. I understood that there were simply more important things to do than to spend all of his time with me, but Jacob didn't.

"Do I always have to fight with you to get you to see me anymore," Jacob asked with his eyebrows pressed together. His lips tightly wound across his teeth.

"No," I answered sourly. "But, Jake…"

"No, but Jake's. Do you not want to spend time with me anymore Bells? Because it sure as hell feels that way," his angry furrowed brow melted into a concerned soften expression. The corners of his lips had dropped into a frown.

My heart ached to see him upset like this. "Of coure, I do. I love spending time with you Jacob…"

"But…" he interrupted rolling his eyes and turning his back on me. He stared at himself in the mirror on his dresser.

"But…" not sure what he was thinking, I chose my words carefully, "you need important things like sleep, and food."

"I need you," he interrupted spinning around to face me. He took a long stride and sat next to me on his small bed. He placed a worried hand on my knee and breathed out like he had been holding that in for the longest time. It wasn't anything new. I understood that he needed me. I needed him, but sometimes we had to be apart.

"I know, Jake. I hate that you're spread so thin all the time. I hate that you fall asleep when we try to watch a movie, because you've been up all day for school, because you were out patrolling with the pack. I hate not being with you, Jake. Every second."

Jacob breathed deeply and relaxed slightly. His muscles let go of his frustrations and his body almost caved in on itself. His elbows went to his knees and his head hung between his hands. He shook his head nervously almost as if he were debating with himself. "Are you happy, Bella?" He asked almost too quickly.

My stomach dropped. A sudden weakness fell through my body. Of course I was happy. I had everything I needed. I had a wonderful best friend who doubled a the man I was in love with. I was going to an okay college, that didn't really offer what I wanted to major in but I found something I enjoyed either way. I had Charlie, who didn't linger too much. I had friends on the rez. I had dreams to be a writer…I wanted to travel…I had dreams… bigger than Forks. My stomach dropped a little more, and suddenly I felt sick. I stood quickly and walked to the window.

I stared out into the rain watching it fall in sheets blanketing everything in a wet sloppy mess. I sighed. I had a boyfriend who could never leave La Push. I had a dream to travel, to go places that I'd never seen. I had wishes of never getting married, not having children, and leaving this small, tiny, incandescent town. I wanted out of Forks, and I couldn't take Jacob with me.

I heard Jacob heavily walk behind me. He planted his arms around me gripping the window seal in front of me. He hesitantly kissed the back of my head as so low soft whimper not meant for me to hear left his chest.

"That's what I thought," he hummed softly in my hair before wrapping his arms around me and squeezing me tighter than he ever had before.

I'm pretty sure that day Jacob knew I was going to leave. It was the when factor that scared him the most.