Disclaimer: All recognizable characters are the property of Stephenie Meyer. All other content belongs to me. No copyright infringement is intended.
August 2010 - Wabush, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
Jasper and I were playing a game of chess when my phone rang. I quickly answered the call thinking it would be Bella or Alice letting us know that they wouldn't be back on time from their trip to Montreal. Earlier, Jasper and I had discussed the possibility that they might decide to stay another night. While the thought of being away from Bella for another day was excruciating, I was comforted by the fact that her control around humans was remarkable for only having been a vampire just over a year. If being back in civilization was something she wanted to enjoy for a little longer, I couldn't deny her that.
The masculine voice on the phone had a slight Spanish accent and I immediately recognized it as my friend Eleazar's.
"Eleazar. It is good to hear from you. How are you?"
"I wish I was calling for pure conversational enjoyment, old friend, but I am in dire need of your help."
I saw Jasper stiffen slightly at Eleazar's words as he could hear them over my phone as well as I could.
"Is everything all right? Please, tell me what I can do," I implored.
Eleazar and the rest of the Denali coven were our closest allies and friends and I would do anything I could to help them.
"We have had a development here, Edward. Four months ago, Carmen and I were hunting. We separated briefly and Carmen...well, she had an unfortunate run in with a human. He had killed a bear and while skinning it, he slipped and cut himself."
"Carmen killed a human?" I asked incredulously. Out of the few vampires that chose to live as vegetarians, Carmen's control was the closest to Car...his.
"No, not in the sense you mean. I interrupted her before she could drain him completely. Edward, he was turned."
Jasper and I were both taken aback by this news.
"Turned? You have a newborn living with you? He wasn't too far gone? Was he her singer? How did you stop her?" My questions came tumbling out. I was incredulous at the thought of Eleazar being able to stop Carmen while she had been feeding from the man.
"I apologize for the interrogation, Eleazar. I'm just shocked to hear this news."
"It is quite all right, Edward. I knew you would have questions. Yes, he survived the transformation. Carmen doesn't believe he was il suo cantante. No, she simply waited too long to hunt and his blood mixed with the bear's was just too much for her to resist... How did I stop her? I have no real idea, to be honest. It was an intense situation, as I'm sure you can imagine. Carmen's shame has been quite severe. Joseph has been unbelievably understanding, but we do have an issue and it is a bit delicate."
"Has he killed someone? Has he drawn attention to you?" I asked with urgency. I knew my barrage of questions was rude, but attention was something we couldn't have and the Denali clan was linked very closely with us due to our choice of sustenance. Anything that could bring the Volturi down on their coven could quickly lead to inquiry about our family and I couldn't have that. I felt a wave of relaxation wash over me and I gave Jasper a nod of thanks.
"No, no, nothing like that, my friend. Joseph is a quiet man and has handled himself very well, considering. It's more that he is unable to handle the...ah, attention from the sisters."
The sisters. Tanya, Kate and Irina. The basis for the succubus legend. Jasper let out a small chuckle upon hearing this and I was hard pressed to hold mine in as well.
Poor bastard don't stand a chance if one of them girls wants him, 'specially as an unstable newborn. Not everyone is as stubborn as you are, Edward.
I shot Jasper a withering look, but his thoughts were very close to the ones I had upon hearing Eleazar's words. The sisters could be very insistent about their feelings.
"I understand what he's going through, but how can we be of help?"
"Joseph wishes to maintain his current diet and if there was anywhere else I could think of to send him, I would, my friend, as I don't wish to burden you with our troubles. Alas, there are no other situations I know of that could help him refrain from drinking human blood. Is it possible, Edward, that he could come live there with you and your family until he is ready to be on his own?"
Jasper and I both reacted to Eleazar's words.
A male newborn in our home? I don't know, Edward. We just went through Bella's first year...
I agreed with Jasper and while Bella's past year hadn't been the worst newborn experience I had ever been a part of, that honor belonged entirely to Emmett, she was still plagued with a fair amount of blood lust at the beginning. After that one unfortunate occurrence early on, she had dedicated herself to overcoming her thirst and I was proud to say my wife had done an excellent job.
"Edward, he's a decent being. Carmen is devastated that she has done this to him and has even contemplated us leaving the sisters to take him away, but he won't hear of us leaving our home for him. He says he'll try living on his own first. We both know that situation isn't the best solution for any of us."
I let out a frustrated sigh as I did know firsthand how being alone and existing solely on animals was hard to do. For a newborn that would be impossible. I could only imagine what Carmen was going through and Eleazar was right, there was no way they could release a newborn on his own. The kind of attention that could draw would potentially be dangerous to all of us.
"Edward, I know it is a lot to ask of you and your family. I wouldn't impose on you if it wasn't absolutely necessary. I hope you understand that."
"I know, Eleazar. I do. I will speak to my family and let you know."
"That is all I can ask. Thank you, my friend. I'll wait to hear from you."
I ended my call and Jasper and I exchanged knowing glances. A male newborn. Not the most pleasant of situations.
"You sure about this, Edward? A newborn we know nothing about. A male at that. Bella was not typical and–"
"They are our friends," I cut him off. "You know that's what–" I heard my voice catch and cleared the non-existent blockage from my throat and continued. "We should at least discuss it with the family."
I looked into my brother's bright golden eyes. I knew he could feel all of my conflicting emotions at the moment. I implored him to understand my position.
You're right, Edward. Of course. With the family.
This story is dedicated to wolvesandvamps, who so graciously donated to the Support Stacie auction in my name. Her prompt was wonderfully thought out and creative and I'm honored she thought enough of me to allow me to write this for her (and you). Her amazing understanding at the disgusting amount of time it has taken me to get this out is much appreciated.
Thank you jmeyer for being my amazing beta. Thanks also go out to Melissa228, EsmeM48, and rands for their feedback on the outline. I'm eternally grateful to philadelphic, windycitywonder, and annanabanana for their pre-reading and suggestions along the way, and to Algie for supplying the inspiration for the title.
This is an AU story entirely in EPOV and will diverge from canon just after the newborn fight in Eclipse.
Thank you for reading.