By now you've discovered that 'update in 2 days' actually means '1 week.' Oops.
And so we finally come to the end of (my) Edward and Bella's journey. Or is it the beginning? I have more to say, but I'll let you read and see you at the bottom. Meanwhile, The Twilight Saga and all of its characters are Stephenie Meyer's property and no copyright infringement is intended. I'm still 98.5% sure there's something illegal and intoxicating in the paper but it's too late and I don't give a damn.
The Family Business
SuzsPetals © 2010
I closed my eyes and exhaled with relief. It felt as though I had been holding my breath for ages. A ribbon of solid ice wound through Alice's voice as she delivered the news I had been praying for.
"Good. Did he suffer?" I asked, with my own current of malice I wouldn't have thought myself capable of a year ago. Alice sighed heavily at the other end of the line.
"No, damn it. He was sleeping. It will be ruled natural causes. At least we can rest assured he's burning to a crisp in Hell, where he belongs."
Hell was too good for Aro Volturi, as far as I was concerned. We'd probably never know how many innocent beings — human or immortal — he had ordered destroyed, but we knew he was responsible for siccing that shape-shifting bitch on our family. He was probably sleeping half way around the world at the time, but Aro may as well have torn Edward apart himself.
I flinched at the memory of that day, finding him dying in the snow, blood and feathers creating a macabre collage that would be permanently etched in my immortal mind.
"Jane and Alec have stepped in as acting CEO and CFO until it can all be sorted out. They're grief-stricken, of course," Alice said dryly, interrupting my reverie.
"Naturally. He practically raised them." We kept up the sarcastic banter, understanding it was our inadequate attempt to keep the truth, the rage, at bay.
Aro had turned the headquarters into a virtual fortress once he made it back to Italy, after burning Edward's home to the ground. He surrounded himself with a few loyal employees who were blind or indifferent to his true intentions. Unfortunately for Aro's health, he counted Jane's ally, Marcus, as one of his faithful.
With the knowledge of a certain brilliant physician, the fatal narcotic in Aro's blood stream would never be detected. Aro Volturi was a type-A, stressed out businessman with too much on his plate. Completely unaware of the true nature of his business empire, the authorities should have no reason to find anything suspicious about an untimely heart attack. As the owner of Bronze International, one of the world's leading manufacturers and distributors of fire extinguishers and flame retardant products, there must have been unimaginable responsibility. Oh, there was.
Carlisle had since been tapped as the unspoken leader of the remaining hunters, the ethical ones. None of Aro's closest minions would be stupid enough to avenge his death when they were so clearly outnumbered. Alice expected the followers to crawl off before they drew too much attention from the wrong people — mortal or otherwise.
The Cullens were working with the other teams, as well as the Quilleutes, on new and humane efforts to protect the innocents from vampires who had no interest in animal blood. It hadn't been an easy transition but the wolves had always hated Aro. They reluctantly went along, against their legacy, to work with the family.
That's how I thought of them. They were a fusion of loyalty, passion, love, strength and honesty. I loved them unconditionally. We had believed in 'live and let live' and planned to wait patiently for Aro's rag-tag group of followers to disband naturally. Unfortunately, we underestimated him and he in turn misjudged the Cullens. Edward paid the price and Aro paid for that mistake with his life.
"Her name was Veruca Amun," said Alice, hesitantly.
"What? Whose name?" I thought I had lost track of the conversation.
"Aro's assassin. The she-wolf. Jane found her file." I expected to be jarred by having a name to put to the woman I had viciously destroyed weeks ago. Nothing. I grunted indifferently at the information.
Alice wisely changed the subject, diverting me from my cold-blooded memories.
"Is he there?" she asked brightly. A little too brightly. Everyone accepted what had happened, but still weren't quite able to act as though nothing had changed.
Edward had most definitely changed.
"No, he headed out with the Nikon a little while ago. He's added National Geographic photographer to the list. Unfortunately, he sees things much better than the camera's eye and it frustrates him to no end."
Alice's laughter tinkled across the distance and it sounded almost natural. Maybe they would eventually relax. Carlisle had been the most conflicted about the attack, but I had a feeling Aro's demise would give him some much needed closure.
"That sounds like Edward. How's he doing?" she asked. I couldn't sense him anywhere near the house, so I spoke freely.
"Good, I think. We went to town on Tuesday and although he was a little tense, he didn't stare at anyone like prime rib on two legs. He's much better." I kept my voice light and specifically didn't mention what he did to the moose we came across on our way home.
It had been a rough month after Edward's transformation and I was glad I had convinced his family to stay away for the time being. Besides needing time to wrap their heads around the change, they didn't need to know how he struggled with his thirst in the first few weeks — still did, although he didn't think I could tell.
And those first two days. God, I would give up a limb if I could erase those harrowing 39 hours from my memory.
I'm not sure it was a conscious decision to turn Edward. All I knew was how blinded I was by the thought of his unfulfilled dreams and yes, by my meaningless existence without him. I wasn't strong enough to let him go and I battled my guilt every damn day.
I recalled sinking my teeth into his neck. The blood was pumping slowly but it filled my mouth and I groaned unconsciously. There was no aphrodisiac reaction that day, however, only the certainty that he would slip away from me forever if he lost much more blood. Already, there was so much of it coloring the snow around him.
As if some secret, dark place in my immortal mind had stored the knowledge, I instinctively let go and traced my tongue over the mark. His wounds were too traumatic and grievous for my venom to do anymore, so I picked up his lifeless body and ran back to the house. I was twenty yards from the front door when he began to scream.
For hours he begged me to kill him. I couldn't help but wonder if I'd done the same thing while he watched me change months ago. I tried the music that had guided me through the fire, but Edward's suffering rarely abated. If it hadn't been for Kate and Garrett, I would have gone mad.
Then of course, there was the fear — no, the terror — that he would emerge from the unrelenting pain crazy with thirst. A monster. The three of us could have probably restrained him, but for how long? If his craving for human blood obliterated his sense of morality, then I would have to live with the consequences of my decision. Forever. For hours, I gripped his hand, rocking and begging him to be okay, to be him.
I closed my eyes, remembering those interminable hours, while Alice cooed on the phone about Edward's progress, bringing me back to the present. Miraculously, none of his family blamed me for my split second decision. All of the guilt was placed squarely in Aro's court.
Still... I agonized daily over the selfishness of my actions. His sister, as usual, sensed my anxiety.
"Bella, how are you doing?"
"I– I'm fine. I just can't help but wonder if..."
"If what?" she prodded.
"If he'll forgive me." I exhaled sharply with the admission. I had tiptoed around for weeks, terrified he quietly harbored resentment toward me for interceding. I had instant empathy for him when I considered how he must have felt, finding me that day — letting the venom take its course rather than destroying me. But my change had been James' doing and I had to own the decision to make Edward like me.
"Honey, he can't forgive you for something he doesn't blame you for," she said confidently. "We've talked; he's emailed me. I would know if he felt that way and he doesn't. I think he hates Aro and that bitch for forcing your hand, but he loves you and knows what that meant for you to do. Would a man who resents you respond the way he did?"
I smiled self-consciously at her reminder. In spite of the miles, Alice and I had grown closer in recent months and I shared everything with her — although I omitted the more harrowing details of his suffering for obvious reasons — including his first moments of his new life.
Those final minutes were excruciating. My eyes widened in fear and I suspended breathing altogether when I heard Edward's heart pound loud enough to burst out of his chest. His back arched off the bed and he squeezed my hand so hard it hurt, which was saying something.
"Shhh," whispered Kate who sat with Garrett across the room. "He's fine. It's almost time." Although she herself had never turned anyone, Kate had seen ten centuries as a vampire. I trusted her expertise.
I nodded and smoothed the hair from his cool brow, listening to the last painful staccato his heart would ever know. The ensuing silence was deafening and his eyes popped open in the next moment. Although it hadn't been all that long since my own eyes had changed, I was nevertheless startled to see the deep crimson irises framed by his long lashes. He stared at the ceiling for several long beats. Then his eyes darted around the room before settling on me, by his side.
"Edward," I whispered, sure that my fear exuded from every non-existent pore. "It's me. Bella. Do you– do you know what happened?"
He continued to stare at me, his eyes tightening as he nodded slowly. I relaxed slightly. If he were that responsive I felt more confident he wouldn't launch off the bed in search of the nearest meal. He spoke before I could question him further.
"My god, you're beautiful," he said, gazing at me as though for the first time.
I sobbed and dropped my head on his chest. Edward's hand immediately caressed my hair.
"Hey, hey. Don't cry, baby." That just made me cry harder, it didn't matter that there were no actual tears to accompany my emotional release. I heard Kate and Garrett steal out of the room while he continued to stroke my hair. I lifted my head and met his eyes.
"I'm so sorry," I said, still not able to manage more than a whisper.
I had grown accustomed to supernatural speed after months spent with others of my kind, but it was unnerving to see Edward employ the same movements as he sat up and took my other hand in his, quicker than the human eye could have registered. We sat side by side on the bed as his ruby eyes bore into mine.
"Bella, don't. We both know who was responsible–," He stopped mid-sentence as his new senses caught up with his words. "What happened to the wolf?" His eyes flitted around as though expecting her to burst into the room.
My heart tightened with trepidation. I had yet to feel any remorse for the bitch's death, but I hadn't thought to wonder about Edward's reaction to my deeds. I had killed someone. In a mythical creatures' court of law it would probably be deemed self-defense, but I was much more concerned with Edward's judgment. I couldn't lie to him, of course.
"She's dead." I hesitated. "I killed her. Garrett got rid of her." Instead of the choked whisper I thought would emerge from my throat, the words were as firm and resolute as my actions had been that day. I could neither forget nor erase the instinctive satisfaction I felt as I stood over the woman's body while Edward lay so near, dying by her hand – paw – whatever.
His eyes widened slightly before they softened and he lifted my hands to his lips. He kissed them both tenderly, lovingly, before speaking.
"Are you all right?"
We both knew he didn't mean physically, as I sat before him unscathed. If I had still been a mortal there was no way my body could have contained my love for him at that moment. I silently admitted to myself if given the chance again, I still couldn't have let him go.
I pulled my hand from his and wove my fingers in his hair, pulling him closer. I kissed his lips with love and with the relief of passing two days of torture before coming to this moment.
"I am. Now," I breathed. "What about you?"
He returned the kiss, but it was tentative. I sensed him struggling with an answer and I pulled back to scrutinize his face. He wouldn't meet my eyes and his flawless features were drawn with tension.
"It ... it hurts."
Like a fool, my hand flew to his chest and ghosted the pale scars the wolf had left there. I assumed because werewolves were as much of an impossibility as vampires, the bitch's claws were more than deadly. Kate, Garrett and I had watched with a sinking realization as the venom had healed Edward, but left light, indelible marks across his torso.
His eyes followed my fingers and he flinched when he saw the souvenir he'd always bear from that fateful day. I splayed my hand over his chest, nestled in the soft hair, trying to cover the memory – for my sake more than his.
Edward met my gaze and I was confused to see the anguish and guilt there. He shook his head tersely and I watched him swallow reflexively. Painfully.
"Oh, honey, I'm sorry!" The memory of Edward taking care of me those first few hours and days rushed back: The mug of warm blood, the useless restraints, the tender ministrations to my every need. I had been so shredded by his suffering — then euphoric by his obviously intact humanity — I completely forgot about his changing nature, his thirst, upon awakening. I slapped my forehead in frustration.
Edward's family had been told of his pending transformation and we all agreed that supplying him, even temporarily, with human blood would not make things easier. He would need to hunt — and soon, from the feral look in his eyes.
As though on cue, my cell phone buzzed across the room and his head jerked toward the sound.
"It's all right. It's Kate," I assured him. Extricating myself from his grasp I crossed the room and glanced at the phone's screen.
No one within miles – you're fine. We're here if you need us. xo
At some point in the preceding hours, Kate and Garrett had arranged to notify me if the coast was clear when the time came to venture outdoors. It wouldn't do to take Edward into the wilds of Denali Park only to stumble upon some outdoorsman who smelled much better than the local wildlife.
From the aching expression on his face, that time was now.
"There's nobody– I mean, nothing to distract you," I said, smiling at him with more confidence than I felt. "Let's go. I can help you."
I temporarily shoved the guilt into a corner of our cabin and focused on alleviating Edward's pain. I could see him wanting to revel in his new senses as we both ran effortlessly through the snow in our bare feet. The storm had passed and the Alaskan sky was a deep blue that seemed to go on forever.
But his thirst blocked out everything and I hurriedly found what he needed. Within a few miles of home, we came across a pair of scrawny deer rooting for food. His instincts took over and without any instruction from me, he took down a doe and drained it in seconds. I averted my eyes when I saw the mixed emotions flicker uncomfortably across his face.
"Better?" I asked, facing him. I knew what a rush it had been for me to discover my animal instincts that night long ago. I killed the mountain lion, sated my thirst, and thrilled in the knowledge I could survive without weekly trips to the blood bank. Would Edward be different?
I registered him nodding, albeit tentatively, but found myself fixated on the smears of blood across his bare chest. I hadn't drunk since the morning Edward was attacked, but the hunger I felt at that moment wasn't bloodlust. He followed my eyes downward and without thinking, wiped his hand across his chest and hesitantly licked his fingers. That undid me.
Barely creating a stir in the air, I closed the distance between us and took his hand in mine, pressing my lips to his palm. The scent of the deer blood was inconsequential as I felt my desire rise. It seemed like months since we had been close when all I could see was the agony etched on his face mere hours earlier.
Edward met my hungry gaze and I knew I wasn't alone. I stood on my toes and dragged my tongue over the small swatch of blood by his jaw before covering his mouth with mine. Before I knew it, he picked me up and backed me against the nearest tree. I never truly appreciated the strength of a newborn vampire until that moment.
"Better, but not great," he rumbled. "I need to be distracted."
Something in his voice reached out and grabbed me between the thighs. I whimpered and buried my face in his neck.
I had been so very fearful I would lose the man I loved once his heartbeat faded into silence. But he was here, wanting me just as inexorably as he had before everything changed.
"I can do that," I assured him.
The sharp December air caressed our bodies as we tore off the clothes impeding our progress. I barely felt the bark against my back and at least three saplings fell to our passions as we flew from the snow bank to an outcropping of boulders, and through a tight cluster of aspens.
I hadn't realized how much I held back when he was human. The barely restrained power he now exuded was intoxicating and overwhelming. When he buried himself inside of me the first time I thought I would never fall back to earth. From the look on his face, he was equally shaken by the new sensations. The immediate forest paid the price of our relief, anxiety and urgency before we finally collapsed beneath the boughs of a huge spruce.
He kissed me erratically up and down my neck and jaw before growling in my ear, "Does it get easier? Better?"
I furrowed my brow. "What, honey? Us, the thirst, what?" My own emotions were running so high, I wasn't sure to what he referred. I had months to learn how to distance myself from the constant burn, and honestly, the thirst had never ruled me. I realized I shouldn't assume the same was true for him.
"Never us. Being with you is like breathing," he said, smiling crookedly at his choice of words. Breathing wasn't what it used to be. He looked uncomfortable before continuing. "My throat. It feels like it's on fire. The deer helped but not… not nearly enough."
I caught a glimpse of his naked fear then. I had taken the ability to control my true nature for granted. Edward's instincts were telling him animal blood wasn't what he needed to thrive. I was relieved we chose not to tease him with the real thing, even if it was in a bag. I would need to find him something more substantial — preferably carnivore — and stay close until he trusted himself. God knows what it would do to him if he accidentally hurt some— I couldn't even go there.
I put my fingers to his lips. "It'll get better. I promise," I said, hoping it was the truth. "Let's go home and get decent in case we run into someone from the coven. They've all been so worried about you. Well, except Tanya. She apparently muttered something like 'what a waste' when she heard what happened."
He laughed and the sound warmed me in ways I hadn't thought possible in the past two days.
"Like she ever had a chance," he murmured, taking my hand and running kisses from my fingertips down to the crease of my elbow.
"Come on," I said, standing before we got carried away again. Priorities. "We'll get dressed and find you something more… satisfying."
"You're probably right," I said to Alice, remembering those first few hours and days after Edward's change. "I just worry. He had a lifetime of believing something was evil, then to wake up as one of them. I can't even imagine how he reconciles it."
And I did that to him, I thought to myself. The bigger game seemed to help but I saw the hunger flare in his eyes a week later when a group of snowshoers came close enough to smell. He wouldn't leave the cabin until he was certain they were miles away. Sometimes, when he didn't know I watched, Edward seemed so lost in his thoughts, alone with his worries.
"It was a shock for everyone, Bella, but let's face it — you kind of greased the skids for us. Unintentionally, of course," she added in a rush. "He doesn't blame you and neither do we. In fact…" Alice trailed off nervously.
"What?" I had a bad feeling.
"Well, we voted and all agreed it's time to see how you're both doing. With Aro gone, there's no more reason to keep such a low profile." Alice took a breath and finished before I could interrupt. "Please don't say no because we already bought the tickets."
"All?" I squeaked. "Alice, we don't have enough room in this cabin for all five of you. Fuck." I wasn't sure if I was more excited or unnerved by her announcement. I missed them so much, but how would they react? And seriously, where would I put five people?
"Um, six, actually," said Alice, clearing her throat. "Jasper's coming too. He's about to get his piece of paper from UNF and get the hell out of Dodge. Now that Emmett has moved in with Rosalie, Jasper's going to stay in his room until, you know, he finds something else."
In spite of the unexpected announcement, I grinned at Alice's offhand mention of Jasper's plans. I could tell from his emails that he had found a calling in Forks and I knew that Alice was an intrinsic part of that. It was more than gratifying to watch two of my favorite people on the planet discover what I had. I was once again struck by the ironic twist of fate: they never would have met if it hadn't been for my legendary bad luck and untimely 'death.'
"Well, Alice, when do you plan on descending upon us? I'll need to let Edward know he has to build a couple of guest rooms on the cabin by...?"
"Next Friday," she replied matter-of-factly.
"Oh, just go buy some sleeping bags. We'll be fine." Emotions betrayed her when she added, "We miss you guys. I miss you. Please?"
As usual, Alice's intuition was on the money. We needed our family and with that depraved excuse of a CEO gone, it was time. I sighed theatrically, although we both knew I had little say in the matter.
"Of course. Email me your flight information. We'll figure it out," I assured her. After saying our good-byes I disconnected and looked around the cozy living room wondering where I was going to fit a half dozen Cullens.
He was quiet but I heard Edward approach the house moments before he walked in. I met him at the door with an exuberant embrace tempered with an ambivalent smile.
"So you'll never guess who's coming to town. And it ain't Santa."
He chuckled and returned the hug, squeezing my ass for good measure. "I heard. Don't worry — we'll make room. If push comes to shove we can let Rosalie and Emmett stay at the coven's guesthouse."
I snorted at the thought. "That might be worth it just to see what Rosalie would do if Tanya decided to cast her slutty succubus attention to Emmett."
Edward rolled his eyes at me but remained serious. "It's time, Bella. I'll be okay, I promise."
I exhaled and rested my forehead on his chest. Although I didn't really worry about his control around people he loved, I knew we'd need to plan and shop and hunt in the days preceding their arrival. There was a lot to do and my mind began to address the necessities in an organized fashion I never possessed as a human. Before I could take charge, however, Edward took my chin and tipped my head up to meet his eyes. They were almost as gold as mine and brimming with tenderness.
"I probably heard more than you wanted me to," he said. I winced, not having to guess. It would never be easy to keep secrets in a house of vampires. Fortunately, we didn't need to have any.
"You can't possibly think that I blame you — much less don't forgive you," he said with thinly veiled exasperation.
"I took your life — your entire future — into my hands and made a decision that wasn't mine to make. It was the most selfish thing I've ever done. How could you not feel something akin to resentment?" My voice rose as I let out the fear I'd been choking on for weeks.
Edward shook his head patiently. "What about me? Should I have destroyed you that day in the crack house, just as I'd been taught for years? If you were being selfish, then I showed you the way."
"Would I have chosen this life for either of us? Absolutely not. But it seems that destiny, fate or plain old fucked up luck had different plans."
His equanimity confounded me. "You had a lifetime to learn about the evil no one in the real world even knows about. I know that changed when you found me, but to become what you were taught to hate and fear. I- I don't understand."
I gripped the front of his flannel shirt as though he would escape before enlightening me. He offered an indulgent smile and kissed my temple, then took my face in his hands.
"Baby, I fell in love with you. The human you, the vampire you, the bright, feisty, stubborn, generous, nurturing you. You're still you and for better or for worse, I'm still me."
I gasped quietly and he kissed me once on the lips before continuing.
"Sure, it pisses me off that you're better at this life than I am, but it's getting easier. I talk to Garrett when I need to, and being around the family will probably help to desensitize me. I know I'd never hurt anyone because I know you'd never let me. It doesn't matter what we are, it only matters that we're together, right?"
I nodded numbly.
"If you don't take me over to that bearskin rug right now, I'll never speak to you again."
The threat was, of course, unnecessary and we lay tangled in each other before a roaring fire much later. I lightly traced the scars on his chest as I told him about Aro's sudden passing. His reaction was almost as indifferent as mine. We discussed how many cots we would need to buy and where we would put everyone in the coming week. He absently played with the hoop in my navel while informing me of our Uno game with Kate and Garrett the following day.
It was the familiar conversation of lovers after they shared every other intimacy. I could almost accept the notion that we might theoretically do this forever.
"Did you get some good shots today, in spite of the inadequate lens and all?" I asked lazily while laying my head on his chest, staring at the hypnotic flames.
Even without a pulse or a heartbeat, I could sense Edward's excitement before he responded.
"I think so. I'll know when I get them up on the Mac, but I had an idea while I was out there." I propped myself on my elbow to watch his face. He was animated and the reflection of the fire seemed to dance with enthusiasm in his amber eyes.
"Yes?" I asked, intrigued.
"I realized that National Geographic may not want the services of a photographer who can't travel to faraway places where they have, you know, natural sunlight." I knew he was also thinking about the masses of humanity, but there was no bitterness, just humor. "Their loss, but what if I compiled some really great art of this area? And what if you added your words–," he placed his hand against my mouth before I could protest. I hadn't hidden my scribblings, but I wasn't past the stage of writing them for my own amusement.
"You've been too busy worrying about me this past month, but I know you were writing down some of your thoughts after we moved here, even a little poetry. What if we combined our talents and made a spectacular coffee table book about this region — my pictures, your words? It's perfect," he stated with unswerving confidence.
His grin was contagious and I couldn't help but bob my head in agreement. Before this life, Edward had mused about far-flung job possibilities to escape his growing antipathy to his father's legacy, not to mention Aro's twisted vision. With centuries yet to unfold before him, my beautiful man entertained his first tangible dream. And I was part of it.
"I love it," I said, dazzled by the possibilities. "Sort of like our own family business?"
"Exactly! We'll be too talented and eccentric to do any press, though."
"It will draw so many tourists here, the State of Alaska will probably beg to pay us additional royalties."
"We'll be the richest vampires in the region," I giggled.
"Nah," Edward said dismissively, "Eleazar has more money than God. Tight bastard. But it doesn't matter how much we make." He sat up, leaning on one elbow to face me. I smiled expectantly at him as he plotted our dreams. He stroked my temple down along my cheekbone before tracing my bottom lip with his thumb. I got lost in his eyes.
"Whatever we do, it's just a job," he explained, leaning in to kiss me deeply. "You," he whispered between kisses, "you are my life's work."
And thus ends the story of Slayerward and Vampella, as they were affectionately dubbed. I hope you enjoyed reading it half as much as I enjoyed writing it. This experience has been one of the best of my life – not only did I write a novel-length story, but I did it with feedback, support, encouragement and a built-in fan base. Priceless. Thank you for everything.
I will never be able to adequately express my appreciation for the beta services of my FicBitches: McWinn77, HeidiTown and TexasKatherine. It's a lot of work for free and I can't believe they did it for me week after week since February – happily, humorously and often hurriedly because I do everything last minute:-/ I've also got lotsa love for VitaminR70 for providing regional answers, cullenarycurser for her medical know-how, and the posse of press whores who pimped my shit like it was CNN breaking news. These chicks and more have become true friends, not just online cheerleaders. *sniffle*
This is starting to sound like an Oscar speech so I'll cut to the chase before the music starts. A few months ago I participated in the Fandom Gives Back charity auction. A large amount (which escapes me now) of money was raised for a TFB outtake. I then offered an extra one of my choice. Please visit the website (teamslayerward(dot)blogspot(dot)com) so generously organized by texaskatherine and donnersun for voting on an outtake if you bid and details of how you can donate if you missed the opportunity in July and still want to read more of this mess. Wait a few days though, since this will be the first they hear of it;) I also recently wrote a Kate and Garrett side-take for the preemies fundraiser – go to fandomforpreemies(dot)blogspot(dot)com for details on getting mine PLUS 100 MORE stories or outtakes for a measly $5. Some or all of these TFB extras will be posted on fanficnet in its own story listing in coming months, so put me on alerts if you want to be notified then.
Hit review to tell me what you think or to ask any lingering questions. Thanks again readers, from the bottom of my heart, for sharing my story with me and making this a true (Twi) family business;)