AN: Excuses, excuses. Sorry. Read, review, enjoy. I don't own it. Did I miss anything?
"Carlisle's power? I don't believe he has a power."
Bella quirks an eyebrow, a silent conversation.
"Heidi, I need to speak to Eleazar, now," he growls and Heidi runs off to fetch him. "How did I not see this? What happened?"
Bella fills him quickly on Rose's betrayal and he ponders it. When we hear a knock at the door, alerting us to Heidi's return, Bella whispers, "He can't see me here, but I suspect in order for him to reveal anything, you may need to threaten him," she shakes her head. "Threaten his mate. Jane, go find Carmen and keep her company. Jasper, fill the room with as much trust as possible. I'll just be in the other room."
Chapter Thirteen: Just Us
I feel the tingle of trust Jasper sends around the room as Bella climbs on Alec's back and the two of them disappear through a side entrance.
Interesting. I never knew that was there.
Anyhow, Eleazar comes strutting into the room, completely oblivious and only the way a veggie vamp can.
"Brothers," he says with a purposed bow, not even acknowledging the rest of us in the room. "To what do I owe the occasion of the summons today?"
Oh cheese and rice, we just entered some eighteen hundred time zone.
"It seems you have been keeping secrets from your Kings, have you not?"
"Secrets, friends? Surely not. My knowledge is your knowledge."
"We shall see about that," Caius sneers as Aro takes the the leaf-eater's hand in his. "Jane has your wife."
The look of pure of horror on Eleazar's face at that news, will haunt me for all time.
"Hmmm?" He answers, his thoughts somewhere between his lovely mate and a new meal.
"We have been friends for decades now, have we not?"
"That we have." Eleazar says with a clap to the shoulder. "Is there something I can do for you?"
"I think it's finally time to ask you of my gift, friend."
Eleazar chuckles. "I was actually wondering when you would ask."
A span of minutes stretches before them, each waiting, watching, thinking.
"Loyalty," is all Eleazar says. Carlisle nods, clearly he suspected as much. "They'll do just about anything you want, should you use it. Do you... Use it?"
"Not much," Carlisle lies. "Not on my friends or family."
But that is exactly who Carlisle uses it on. He knows what it will do and what he will do with it. All it takes will be time and circumstances. Circumstances he can create and what is time to an immortal? He hides a grin.
"You understand, right?" This is crucial, Carlisle thinks. He has no desire to kill any more.
"Of course, old friend. Should the time come when you need my loyalty above all else, you shall have it."
"Oh and Eleazar? You will not speak of this to any one," the blonde haired man laughs. "You won't even remember it."
"Remember what, friend?"
"Nothing, my compatriot. Just that over those hills there," he points off into the distance. "Those hills have the greatest bears."
Eleazar laughs this time. "Let us not tell Emmett, or we shall never sample the merchandise."
Whoa. I don't think I was supposed to see what Aro saw. Clearly, Peter and Jasper don't either. Chalk that one up to weird occurrences at Chateau Volturi, I guess.
"How could he? I don't understand," Eleazar murmurs, lowly.
"I see," Aro exclaims with a flourish of his hands. Honestly. The man should be a theater actor. Like move to England and play nightly appearances at the Rose. "It doth appear that our dear friend Eleazar had no knowledge of the wicked fiend, Carlisle's witchery."
Okay, so maybe it wasn't that bad but I know Bella can hear this shit. Probably having a good laugh.
"But how is that possible, Aro? It's his job to know."
"Yes, dear brother, it is. But in this case, a betrayal would not have been possible. It could've resulted in death... Or worse..."
"Well then, do tell," Marcus inquires. I never knew he could be so school-girl giddy. It's kind of fun in a don't-tell-mom-I'm-gay way. I'll have to ask Baby about that one later.
"It seems that our dear, old friend Carlisle has the gift of loyalty. As our Princess suspected, he can control others just by reminding them of their choice. Their choice to choose him."
"And how did you break such a powerful gift?" Marcus ponders.
"And what are his purposes behind it?" Asks Caius.
"As to the first," Aro looks to Eleazar, who looks worse for wear, having his whole mind just put on display, his trust betrayed by his dearest friend. "I am very sorry for threatening your mate, fratello. It was indeed the only way to see around what was done. I assure you she is excellent health."
"I understand, Master."
"As to the second, Master Caius, your guess is as good as mine. Fortunately, all we have to do is remind them who their loyalty truly remains with... A good friend... A master... A mate..."
"So that's why Rosalie still called him," Peter exclaims, slapping a hand over his mouth, a reminder to be silent.
The doors open revealing two beautiful females.
Or one beautiful female and one little runt. I swear the little one is the sister I never wanted. She flashes me a knowing grin.
Jane has obviously spent way too much time with Baby.
"Ah, here are the lovely ladies now," Aro announces.
Carmen and Jane enter, laughing so hard they can barely hang on to each other.
"...And then she said, she said, she said the shoes made her feet claustrophobic!"
"She did not!" Carmen laughs.
"She did. We then had to search all of Europe for the perfect shoes!" Carmen looks aghast. "I know, right? Now, I like shopping as much as the next girl, sorry Bella, but come on!" Jane screeches.
In all the commotion, we failed to see Bella's own entrance. God, even in jeans and a tee that girl is perfect.
Another round of giggles as Jane joins Aro's side and Carmen kisses Eleazar on the cheek.
"Are you okay, amor?" She whispers quietly to him.
"Yes, yes," he says to soothe her, but his eyes say otherwise.
"They can be trusted, Aro. With everything." Bella says.
"Very well, tesoro. Eleazar, Carmen, this is Princess Isabella Swan," introduces Aro.
Bella rolls her eyes and mutters "Bella Whitlock" under her breath.
"Bella?" Asks Carmen as she comes closer and reaches to brush her cheek. "Bella Swan? Alice told us you died."
"She wishes," Peter mutters, wrapping his arms around Baby.
"Is that amulet real, Bella? Is the prophecy real?" Eleazar wonders, his eyes fixated.
Prophecy? What the fuck?
"Yes. And if you know of the amulet, you know part of what I can do. Please don't make me. Two days. Keep my secret for two days and all will be revealed."
"Of course, Princess," he answers formally.
"Oh not you too! My name is Bella Whitlock. Baby if you're sleeping with me," she flashes us a wink and sticks her tongue out at the shocked expression on Aro's face. "And I will force no one to do anything." She shoots a scolding look at the brothers, who, amazingly enough, manage to look sheepish under her piercing gaze.
"El, honey, what is going on?" The worry in Carmen's tone is thick.
"You may tell your mate, dear Eleazar, but Carlisle must not know we suspect him," Caius says.
"It will be as you wish, my lords." Eleazar takes the hand of his concerned mate, and leaves to seek the confines of more private quarters.
"Poor man," Bella mourns as he takes his leave.
"Now we need to talk about that amulet, missy," Marcus says pointedly.
"And we will, little brother, but there's a whole bunch of shit I need to talk about with my family first. Is that okay?"
"Of course, cara," Marcus tells her. "I'll keep the library clear and make sure your chambers are accessible without running into any... unwanted... vampires."
"Thanks, little bro. Aro, I need to do a little research but after the trials, you and I will sit down for a long talk."
"One moment, tesoro," he calls out before she can leave. "There are one or two things I need to discuss with you and you alone. To my office, if you will."
Bella nods and follows Aro into his office where they can't be overheard. The rest of us are just kind of... silent...
"So..." Peter begins, somewhat nervously scuffling his shoes along the castle floor. "You guys are Baby's little brother's?"
Caius growls softly and Marcus laughs. "Ever since we told her the ages we were turned, she has made it a point to call us "little brothers." We tried to remind her that we are technically much older, but I think she always wanted younger siblings. We officially adopted her into our family last year."
Marcus turns to look at Caius, who is no longer scowling but smiling fondly. "Even if she is an annoying, little-"
"Caius! As you can see, those two definitely have the sibling part down," he chuckles.
"Whoa," I gasp. "So she's like really really a Princess?
"No, I'm not really really a princess, Char. Despite what others may think." The way she says "others" makes me think there is a lot more going here than a wedding. I look over at Jasper and Peter and see they're thinking the same thing.
Bella kisses Aro and Marcus' cheek and bumps knuckles with Caius. Could this day get any weirder?
"Come along, my little lovelies. The library is this way. Oh and the gruesome twosome is back so you'll need to use the back way to get to your quarters." Jane tells us.
"What if they come down to the library?" Jasper asks, already planning.
"Well, Alec, Dem and I will be keeping watch and really now, can you picture Alice in a library?"
The seven of us laugh and follow our guard through the castle. We enter the library, Bella shutting Jane, Alec and Dem out with a little wave before turning to face us. The dam holding back the questions we have for her burst forth and they all come spilling out at once.
"So, what's this all about Baby? Did the brother's really adopt you? How were you so sure about Carlisle's gift? Why are we in a library? What did you and Marcus mean before? Can we trust anyone here? Are you in danger? We can go home right now..."
"Slow down, guys. One thing at a time. Yes the brother's adopted me. What the fuck can I say? I'm loveable," she smiles and pulls me in for a kiss. Yep. Completely loveable.
"But I brought you here, to the library, for a reason. And it answers the next two questions. The brother's and I are the only one that know about this. Until now." She walks over and pulls a book out that moves the shelves revealing a false wall.
This place is wicked cool.
We step into a small room, every inch of wall covered with notes, books strewn about.
"See, we figured out why some vamps have gifts and others don't. That's how I knew about Carlisle." Bella tells us.
"This is amazing," Jasper says as he studies the books and notes.
"You're all on it and someday, I will be too," she reveals.
"But how does it work?"
"It took a lot of research. A lot. I was kinda trapped in a bomb shelter for awhile though," she grins. "But we came up with a pattern that each and every gifted vampire was sired by a gifted vampire. Like, if the code is already there, in your DNA or whatever, the new venom activates it."
"Cool," Peter says as he traces his name on the wall.
"But I don't have a gift. Why am I on here?" I ask.
"Because you do. We can Eleazar to explain it tomorrow, but you do. Have you really never noticed?"
"Not really," I answer her.
''We have," Peter and Jasper reply at the same time.
Huh. I have a gift? Maybe they made a mistake.
"And Marcus? He said he didn't understand," Jasper remembers.
"You know what his gift is, right?" She asks.
"I know he see relationships, but anyone can see how we are with each other," I offer.
"He can do more than "see relationships." He can see the ties that bind us. And the four of us are... mates..." She seems to trip up and mumble over the mate part, her eyes downcast. But then she picks herself up, stronger than ever. "As impossible as that may seem. We need each other. Don't you feel it too? Our powers will work in tandem, we'll be able to understand, if not hear, what each other think. The things we'll be able to do..." She sighs. "In other words, we'll be the strongest coven since the First Coven."
The three of us are stunned silent. No one spoke of the First Ones. Maybe that's why we didn't know about the mate thing. But you can't have more than one mate, right? But I do feel it, I think.
"I understand if you want to leave me now. I'm kinda used to it," she interrupts my musings, near tears.
"Oh, Baby. I don't think we could leave you even if we wanted too," Jasper tells her.
"But you want us to want to be with you," Peter answers for her.
"We do, Baby. Not because of some stupid prophecy, not because of power, but because you are you," I whisper into her hair.
"You are ours," Jasper says.
"So you don't mind, I dunno, sharing?" She grins.
"With anyone else, we might. But I think we can feel it."
"Really, really. You belong to us just as we belong to you. This is fast, I know, but you know as well as I do, the world need us."
"You're so cheesy, Peter."
"I know you all adore me."
"What about the prophecy and the amulet, sug?" I ask.
"I need to read a couple things first, but I promise that when I know, you'll know."
"Then would you care to show us to your chambers, love?" Jasper asks as he takes Baby's hand.
"Of course, kind sir. I just need to grab the book."
She quickly rummages through a rather large pile of precariously stacked books and chooses the one she needs. Taking Jasper's hand again, she leads us up a back staircase into her room.
And we're finally alone.
I pull Baby in for a long kiss and trail my fingers along her neck. She whimpers as Peter comes up from behind her, placing a kiss on her shoulder and sliding the strap of her top down. From behind me, Jasper kisses my neck, his hands roaming over Bella's newly exposed breasts.
"I think I can explain the four mate thing better here," Bella says, pulling slightly away from us and removing the remainder of her clothing. The rest of us, seemingly hypnotized follow suit. She leads us over to her bed and we all take a seat. "This is about four people who belong to each other. Jasper, kiss Peter." I chuckle at the "ya, we don't swing that way" look the boys shoot each other, but their resolve crumbles the moment they look at Bella. The kiss is hot. It starts slow and continues to build. It's... Passionate. Peter's hands tangle in Jasper's hair as their erect bodies inch closer and closer to each other. When they break the kiss, panting, Bella smiles. "This isn't a straight thing or gay thing. It's just... Us..."
"Just us," Peter repeats as he kisses Jasper again, this time pulling Bella to straddle him. Jasper's lips never leave Peter and the way Bella moves against him is erotic. I fill like I should pay admission to see this shit until Bella changes places with me to give her room to suck Jasper's cock. Once I've got the rhythm with Peter down, I reach around and slip two fingers into her, both of us moaning at the heat.
And that's how we come. Together. The four of us. Just us.
"Now all we need is some smokes and Southern Comfort," Peter jokes as we collapse into a mess of tangled limbs and laughs.
"Jane," Bella yells. "If you even think about coming in here, my little human ass will find a way to kill you. I don't care if you have a whole castle full of cigs and SoCo!"
AN: I'm pretty sure I forgot some stuff there, so if you send me a review I will answer whatever questions you have and try to clear up any confusion in the next chapter. Speaking of the next chappie, we'll find out more about what it means to have more than one mate, some stuff about the prophecy and amulet and how the First Coven fits into all this. We might also find out why some people can see what Aro sees through his power. Oh, and we might have a wedding. Just saying. I mean, they are in Volterra for a reason, right?
Until next time, my lovelies!