TWO HEARTS IN SEARCH OF A TITLE

Disclaimer: Stephanie Meyer created these characters. I am just borrowing them for this adventure!

Chapter one, from a Forks Perspective:

For some reason, I kept an old alarm clock in my room. It wailed over the piano sonata that had come up on my I Tunes; snapping my train of thought. I grabbed a black hoodie, with a Celtic design in grey on the back, from my closet; and pulled it on, fluffing my hair with my fingers, grabbing my bag and keys from the floor and headed down stairs. No reason to bother with a mirror – I had no intention of making a fashion statement. Alice caught me on the landing, fixing me with her judgmental stare.

"Tough night?"

"Always, Alice, always" I exited the stairs, gave Esme a kiss on the cheek as I passed through the entry hall and out the front, following my brothers and sisters.

"Enjoy your day." She called after all of us.

Right. Forks High will really be the highlight of these 24 hours – at least there will be something new to observe in my purgatorial laboratory. Lately I was in the habit of fooling myself into thinking I was studying the social and biological thought trends of adolescent minds. The potent sea of hormone-induced aspirations had not changed all that much over the past decades; just the knowledge and boldness of youth had crept up over time. Problems had grown, technology offered some fixes and some new opportunities for mischief, but the core thing was still the same.

Love, Lust or some combination of the two was still the most desired, the most motivating, simply the most thought about item on the list.

It was a world I could observe, but never comprehend.

I'd never had even a crush – at least none I knew of. I love my family, but going with the Greek, no eros had touched me. – I was alone, unpaired.

Maybe that part of me was traded for my skill. My extra hearing could hear all, thoughts, all hearts and minds laid bare to me – so maybe that's why my own cold heart was silent.

I replaced that with a desire to leave a little good behind. Recently, I'd taken the hobby of fixing up older, sporty cars, driving them while in renovations, then donating them to charity. Rosalie had given me the idea and she supplied expert assistance under the hood. My current chariot was an older Saab convertible. "Born From Jets." It was as close as I could come to flying each day – at least the commute to Purg Hi was made bearable.

The news of the day – we were getting a new student in my class – Junior year – even had Alice bouncing as I pulled into the student lot. She pounced on me even before I was out of the car.

"I can't wait to meet the new student – Chief Swan's…?"

"No Alice, I have no idea if it's a boy or a girl." Seems the enrolment had only been decided in the past few days.

We were already inside when the roar of a truck filled the lot. New student crossed all minds, but we still weren't sure who that was.

The morning droned on; English, Civics into French class blurring into another without a look at the new one. Thoughts of this new student were still fleeting, still guarded. Unusual, yes, but I knew that lunch would provide a chance to see with my own senses.

We were sitting together, our usual spot, with our little bubble of space surrounding our quintet like a force field. Fitting in like crown jewels in a Target display case – a little too nice to be mixing with; observing the lunchroom when the 'popular' juniors came in and took their usual places – plus the new addition.

I looked over to a pair of intense, green eyes, full on curious, then they cast their gaze away, off toward the others at their table.

Odd, no one is that blank, that thoughtless. I heard the others give the usual spiel – aloof family, interesting grouping of couples, never mingle with us…

"Earth to " Emmett waved his hand near my ear, then over to Alice, looking lost in thought, but lost in time would be a truer description. We replied almost in perfect unison

" Nothing, major, nothing to report."

With that, first bell rang and I was off to Biology – what I called overkill 101 – now a good Zoology course, that would hold some interest. Entering the room, I saw the new set of texts on Banner's desk and realized I had the only open spot at my table.

Interesting indeed.

Chapter One continued: – from a Phoenix vantage point.

Goodbye Sun! – Cheesy thought, but it was true. I was headed off to the rain capital of the USA.

I could stand the rain – it was the cold that concerned me a bit. I was no fan of winter sports, per se, and I hadn't been in a cold place since I could remember. Not that summers in Forks were warm, but I just had no frame of reference.

Renee and Phil had put me on the plane with both relief and reluctance – but it hadn't taken a lot of persuasion to let me live with Charlie – a.k.a. Dad. With Phil in the picture, Mom would not fall due to her own devices. It was time for me to get up and out into the world – even a green, wet and probably cold one.

We were late landing in Port Angles, leaving me edgy, with my worldly treasures and wardrobe filling - just two bags, sagging a bit as I scanned the terminal. Charlie was waiting and we both had a tired air. So all I did that night was flop into bed. I would not skip. I didn't want to fall behind.

Morning sun caught me up and then it was thunder and lighting "It's Time" echoed in my mind and the sunlight faded into a greenish brown haze. I opened my eyes to my new reality. I dressed quickly – as a teachers' kid in Phoenix, I chaffed a bit with the restrictions and expectations when I was younger. Here I would be the Sheriff's. I wondered how that would color my reception. I'd never mixed too much with the kids in town on my summer visits and then I hadn't been here in a few years; Charlie meeting me for our 'annual' at more touristy spots.

Dad eyed me as I scrambled around the kitchen, grabbing a bowl and sitting down. Wheaties – not my first choice for breakfast. We could sort out chores later, but I would happily take on the shopping. I was chewing when Charlie spoke.

"Sorry things got so late last night"

"Yeah, not how I wanted to arrive."

"I got you something, sort of a homecoming gift. I thought you'd find it handy." A handy gift – well pocket knives are banned in Phoenix?, my curiosity grew with his next statement. "It's out front, to the side"

I followed him out to the side yard, where a great, bulbous fendered, once red, 1950's pickup, edged up to the beginnings of the forest that borders Charlie's place. I broke into a real grin.

"Wow, I … thanks, I mean it."

"You shouldn't have any trouble with it. Billy Black? You remember him? – He can't drive anymore and Jacob rebuilt most of it, so you have some freedom here."

YES, I can drive myself to school. This truck may be the highlight of my day.

"Dad, this is really great of you, but I think I'd better get in it and get going."

We nodded to each other as I got in and brought the engine to life – LOUD, hey it sorta suits my mood. I can't hide here, so Forks High, here comes Edward Swan.

4

2 Hearts in Search of a Title

by Reb