"Will I EVER have normal days?"
My eye lids struggled to slide up as the sun's rays worked against me to keep them down. The voice in my head sounded familiar yet odd since it's been awhile since that voice invaded my head. Sam? That can't be right.
Jacob! Wake up!
I opened my eyes to strange surroundings. Where the hell am I? With my mind split between what was going on in La Push and my connection with Leah, I envisioned myself lying on my back in bed as I slowly glanced around the familiar yet unfamiliar bedroom. I looked over to where my cut off shorts should've been, but instead, there was a white bra hanging from a clothing line. What? I glanced over at the dresser mirror and saw that the pictures I have of me, Billy, and my sisters were all gone. This isn't my room. I then glanced over at the window with the missing glass. Wait. Didn't I throw Leah through that…? It all came to me at once. I looked down and saw Leah wrapped around on top of me as she slept peacefully with her head pressed against my bare chest. Our minds were so connected; I could not tell which one of us was thinking this scenario. Her dream popped up in my head in flashes as it distortedly replayed our night together.
Jacob! Are you up?
Crap! Sam! At the sound of me thinking Sam's name, Leah woke up alert and edgy. Her mind, too, was split between thoughts of us in our human forms in her room and what was going on in her actual surroundings somewhere in the woods in wolf form. It was her thoughts with me that had her at a panic. She got up and went to the window, glancing around for any sign of Sam.
Where is he? I don't see him.
I envisioned myself sitting up in bed. The sun's rays came through the window strong. The sun was probably something I was seeing back in La Push.
No, he's in wolf form. I hear him in my head.
Wait… What? I didn't hear him. How is that….
We're Alphas. I walked over to where she was standing by the window. I don't know. Somehow Alpha's can still communicate regardless of the difference of packs.
Are you serious? Can he hear me now?
No, no. Don't worry. Unlike the rest of pack, Sam and I can control what the other hears. I haven't given him permission to listen in. Look, you might want to phase out. Embry'll phase any minute now. We've been taking turns watching for any signs of you. I'm sure Sam wants an update.
Leah rolled her eyes. She was annoyed that everyone was making such a big deal over her disappearance yet pretty much when I left, everyone left me alone. It's probably one of the downsides to being the only female pack member. Everyone feels the need to protect her regardless of her abilities.
Look, can you not tell them where I am? This is ridiculous. I don't need babysitters.
What do you expect, Leah? No one knows where you are or if you're even ok. They're worried. When Sam disappeared, you never stopped looking for him. You think he wouldn't do the same for you?
This is insane. Sam, or anybody else for that matter, doesn't need to concern themselves about me. I'm fine. Tell them I'm ok and that I want to be left alone. Looking for me is only going to make me stay away longer.
Look, I get it. I have no problem giving you all the space you need but I can't control what Sam does. If you don't want anyone hot on your trail, then I'd advise you to keep me informed about what's going on with you. The longer you keep me in the dark, the sooner Sam will be to searching for you.
Jacob! Do you hear me? Sam shouted in my head.
Damn, Sam won't lit up. I thought to myself. Ok so what's it going to be?
Fine! I will phase every night at 8pm sharp. I'll try not to travel to a different time zone. Just make sure nobody phases around that time, ok?
Deal. I'll connect with you later.
Thanks. For everything.
Before I could reply back, Leah phased out. Suddenly, the images of Leah's room and the feelings of relaxation drifted away as I slowly focused in on what was going on in my actual surroundings. The snow started to melt down a little due to the sun. I lifted myself up to stretch out my legs. It felt like I was laying there for days. I could feel the agitation that Sam felt and it brought me back to the matter at hand. I refocused my thoughts to allow Sam to listen in.
I'm up Sam. What's going on?
First things first, did you hear anything from Leah? We lost her scent when we headed up towards the mountains.
I got a hold of her. She's fine. She just needs space. She talked about staying away if she's not left alone.
Leah's always been a free spirit. If it means she'll come back, we won't interfere. Now that that's out of the way, we have another issue that has come about.
We have reason to believe there are others out there like us. Someone's been hunting on our land. The scent is very light. Hard to pick up. Paul found footprints. Different from us but about our size leading out of the rez then it disappeared. We believe they may have phased back at that point. It was too many human prints to detect which direction it may have gone. I have the others looking for other signs.
I saw the images of the discovery through Sam's thoughts. My mind drifted off to the conversation I had with Rahbyn the other day. I let Sam listen in on it.
So it's true. What does she know about them? Do they know about us?
I don't know. I'm supposed to see her sometime today to discuss it further. They may know about us. If they were informed about our history like Rahbyn was, then it's a big possibility. Last time I spoke with Rahbyn, she went back to her rez. You want to head over there now?
She's staying over at Saphire's place?
I believe so. If not, we could always just ask Saphire. She knows about the legends. Maybe she's familiar with this other pack roaming around.
Alright. I'll head over there now. See you in a few.
I could feel the speed of Sam as he took off running. Through Sam's thoughts, I could see he was only a few miles south of the Makah rez.
Paul, head over to_. Sam began, speaking with Paul but then cut off my access to listen in to the rest. It was odd being cut out of the mix. It's like Sam's pack is like some secret society that I'm no longer a part of. But I can't complain. My pack don't irritate me nearly as much as it did being in Sam's pack. I let my thoughts wander as I took off running towards Makah rez. I was a little further away than Sam was so I knew he'd get there first. As I left La Push, I felt the impressions of someone phasing in.
Hey Jake! Any word on Leah?
I could see a blur of trees passing Embry by as he ran through the woods.
She's fine. I'm ending patrol for her. If I don't get the chance, make sure Seth knows too. And Sue also. Right now we got another issue at hand.
I heard. Jared told me about some crazy grizzly bear terrorizing people on the rez. Embry thought laughing to himself.
I skidded to a halt.
Leave it to Jared to spin everything around. Embry continued to laugh. He envisioned a pack of really huge bears acting crazy on the rez.
Embry? Stop listening to Jared. I shook my head and continued my run.
Oh, come on. You have to admit it was funny. He had the younger members searching for bears. It was hilarious.
So is it true? You know, about there being another pack?
Looks that way. I'm heading over to Saphire's place now.
For what? You want to go and hit on Rahbyn's mom too? I could hear the smile in his words. Clearly he was referring to my endless attempts at trying to get Rahbyn to notice me years back. Of course, I had an even lesser chance at being with Rahbyn than I did with Bella. At least I got to kiss Bella.
Funny. I thought with sarcasm. No, Rahbyn's back in town so she mentioned to me about there being another pack out there so linking that with what Paul found, we're pretty sure she could shed some light on who they are and why they decided to come here. If not her, than possibly her mom.
She still hot?
I let my mind wander to when I saw her walk towards me on La Push beach. Looking at my thoughts, he knew the answer to that one. Embry had a slight crush on her too once. That ended up going away when he met Arielle. Arielle Becca was Embry's first love. You would've thought they were joined at the hip. A connection as strong as an imprint. Then, I don't know, one day she wrote a letter to him saying she couldn't be with him any longer and never returned again. I remember how messed up Embry was after that. He got over it for the most part but all of us at some point have been in his head when his thoughts drifted to her. Wondering, what she was doing? Why'd she leave? Was she thinking about him? When Rahbyn left, I didn't go through what Embry went through from the lost. My feelings for Rahbyn never went past a deep crush. I had to admit though, seeing Rahbyn made me remember the feelings I had for her a while back. Maybe if I never imprinted and wasn't so caught up in Bella, Rahbyn may have been a possibility for…..
Yeah, right Jake. Imprint or no imprint. I bet you by the end of the week, you'll be out on a date with her.
Double it and you got a deal.
Sweet! Quil's gonna want to be in on this bet too.
No, Quil still owes me money from the last one.
What does it matter anyway? You and I both know you're gonna lose. He started laughing to himself. I let him laugh on as I continued running. I already reached Makahs rez so I didn't have far to go. Embry's laughter was suddenly drowned out when a vision of a couple walking hand in hand, came from behind a nearby tree. I instantly skidded to a halt, but it was too late. The couple looked back at me with wide eyes. The guy's body began to tremble as the girl quickly moved out of the way. I watched as the all too familiar rippling sensation run throughout the guy's body as his clothes tore off and he massively phased coming down on all fours. He was as big as me but not a wolf. He looked more like a feline. Like a huge black panther with aqua blue eyes staring menacing at me. Embry's laughter stopped abruptly as his heartbeat quickened. It wasn't the guy phasing that had him at a standstill. It was the girl that was with him. I glanced over at the girl and watched her closely. Her hair was longer and her body was more toned but it was definitely her. Arielle Becca.
Embry snapped out of his trance as anger set it. Suddenly, Embry bolted running faster than he's ever run. His thoughts ran a million times over but it all amounted to one thing. He was coming to Makahs rez.
Stay focused Embry.
What is she doing there?
I don't know, but right now, I have to focus on this guy.
I stared back at the guy in feline form. He seemed to be sizing me up the way I was doing with him. I didn't want this to turn into a fight but I didn't see him backing down anytime soon either. Neither of us seemed to trust the other enough to just let it go so we stared each other down. I then turned my attention back to Arielle and that seem to set the guy off. I watched as his eyes turned black as he sprinted forward. Jumping backward, I watched as he jumped over me and skidded to a stop as he u-turned back to me and charged. I pounced on him as we both rolled around throughout the forest, biting through flesh. Biting a chunk of the back of his neck, I swung him back and forth, letting go as he flew into several trees in his path. There was a loud crunching sound as back hit a wide tree and he came crashing down into the ground. He shrilled in agony as his body shook uncontrollably. I ran over to him to get a better look. He needed help.
Embry, go get Carlisle! He needs to look at this.
I need to see about Ari_
No! Worry about her later. Get Carlisle! Guide him to Saphire's place!
He didn't like the order any more than I liked giving it. I felt the strain of Embry's legs struggling to go against my command, but with no luck. The weight of the command forced Embry's front legs to kneel down in obedience as he unwillingly bowed his head. The command forced him to reluctantly turn around and head for Forks to get Carlisle. I never used an Alpha command on anyone but I knew Embry had tunnel vision right now. Only seeing Arielle. If I didn't give him a direct order he couldn't refuse, he would've never went for help. Right now, I had to try to help this guy. I felt safe enough that he wouldn't try to kill me while I phased back, considering his present predicament, so I let the splitting sensation come over me as I came down in human form. I put on the sweats I had folded up around the cord on my ankle. I needed to communicate with the guy. His body seemed to be in shock so he needed to calm down enough to phase. I remember going through this all too well.
"Calm down! Relax your body so you can phase back."
His body looked like it was responding to what I was saying but he seemed to have a problem phasing. His body shifted quickly in and out of phasing, going human form and then back to feline form.
"Come on. I know it hurts but you have to calm down. It sounded like you've broken something so you have to try to phase back before it heals wrong. Just relax, ok?"
Slowly but surely he worked on it until he was able to fully phase back. In human form, naked, he curled up in a fetal position trying to withstand the pain. I needed to get him to Saphire's place. I could tell his spine already healed crooked. The re-breaking was going to be hell on him. I looked around and saw Arielle peeking behind a tree a few miles away.
Arielle backed up slowly and ran the opposite direction. Well there goes that idea of trying to get her to bring him some clothes. I didn't want to alarm the residents on the rez by bringing him in naked but looks like we can't avoid that. Putting my hands underneath him, I scooped him up and carried him toward Saphire's place. His body shook from the uncomfortable crooked position his spine healed in. It shouldn't take Embry and Carlisle long to get to the rez. And that's another problem. Carlisle's presence here may not go over well. His presence alone might trigger this guy to phase back to wolf form. It was different when Carlisle worked on me. I knew enough about him to know I could trust him enough to get the job done without trying to kill me. Plus, the Treaty set in place stops us from harming one another but this guy isn't a Quileute. He's not confined to any Treaty so he has full range to kill Carlisle if he feels Carlisle poses a threat. I'm going to have to tell him.
"Jeremiah," he spit out through cringed teeth.
"Jeremiah. Oh, I'm Jacob, by the way. Anyway, there's something you need to know before I take you to my friend's place."
"NO! Just take me home. I live a few miles south of here."
"My friend's place is straight ahead. I'm having someone meet us there so you can get some medical help. Your spine healed wrong."
"I can't have a doctor check on me. They're going to know right away that something's not right. Just take me home. I'll be fine."
"You won't be fine if your spine is in the shape of an L. Your phasing is all out of wack. I know a doctor that can fix you. When my bones healed wrong after a battle I was in, the doc came in and set them straight. He's good. And discreet. You and I both know we have to keep who we are under wraps."
"Your doctor must be one of us, then." Jeremiah said with relief.
"Not exactly. That's what I need to tell you before you meet him."
"What is it?" he looked up at me cautiously.
"Ok, but before I tell you, it's in your best interest to keep an open mind and not flip out when I tell you."
"Why would I flip out?" he asked, not liking where this was going.
"Because you may not like who's coming."
"Jacob, just spit it out already. Who is coming?"
I took a deep breath and let it my words rush out.
"The doc that fixed me, that's coming to fix you is a….. vampire."
His eyes grew wide in horror mixed with anger as his body shook even more violently trying to phase.
"You have to calm down and let me explain!"
He forced himself to calm down enough for his body to stop shifting as much.
"Your bringing a bloodsucker here to kill me and you want me to calm down?"
"Carlisle isn't coming down to kill you. He's not like the others. Trust me. You'll be in good hands."
"Carlisle? It has a name?" he asked disgusted.
"Look, I understand why you're hesitant. Just let him fix you. It's not like you have so many options here. You won't phase right because your spine is all messed up and I doubt you know a doctor strong enough to fix you properly. He has just as much to lose coming here as you do. So the way I see it, you can either, trust me and let Carlisle fix you, or you can stay the way you are, in pain, without being able to defend yourself against a bloodsucker who's really out to get you. You choose."
"Why should I even trust you? Huh? You're the reason I'm like this. If I didn't step in, who knows what you would've done to Ari_," realization set in as he looked around searching. "Where's Arielle? What did you do to her?" he asked accusingly.
"Relax, I never touched her. I've been around you this whole time. I called her to help but she took off."
"Yeah, that's right. I forgot you called for her," he said calming down. "Wait a minute. How'd you know her name?" he asked suspiciously.
"Long story, Jeremiah. I know her through a friend from years ago. Believe me; I wasn't going to hurt her or you for that matter. I didn't see you two coming from behind the tree. I tried to stop but by the time I did, you had already phased, to my surprise. Didn't see that coming."
"Well I didn't expect to see a giant wolf coming towards us. I freaked out, ok? I saw you glance at Arielle and, I don't know, I lost it. I thought you were after her."
"No, I only looked at her because she looked familiar to me. It wasn't until I looked at her some more when I realized who she was. Seeing her caught me off guard. If there's any constellation, I didn't mean to mess up your back like that."
"It's fine. I attacked you first so I can't blame anyone for this but myself. I'm just not looking forward to this bloodsucker you sent to come out here. How did you come across this leech?"
"Another long story. You're familiar with the Quileute legends?"
"A little, why?"
"Well, you know about the Treaty we made?"
"No, what Treaty?"
"Long story short, the Quileute's and Carlisle's Covent made a Treaty. If they stayed off our land and not bite a human, we won't kill them."
"Why make a Treaty with them at all? Why not just kill them right then and there? You know what they're capable of. Why spare them?"
"They were different from the others. They said they didn't hunt humans so the Treaty was put in place to make sure that stayed that way. Even their eyes look different from the others. Golden, instead of the usual red. I don't know; the pack before us didn't see them as a threat so we're honoring the Treaty they made. Besides, they've proven to be no threat to anyone. We even fought on the same side in battle."
"You seem to really trust them. I guess if I want to get better, there isn't any other option, is there?"
"Afraid not. So you're cool with it?"
"I'm not jumping for joy over it, but I won't get hostile either. If he can fix my problem, I won't complain."
"Hmm, that's what you think. Just wait to you see how he goes about fixing you."
"Wait, what you mean by that?" he asked nervously.
We arrived at Saphire's place with Sam and Rahbyn rushing over to us to see what happened.
"No time. We're here." I said avoiding his question as Sam and Rahbyn approached us. There was no need to panic him further by telling him about the re-breaking that would have to be done. Hopefully, doc will bring a whole lot of pain killers. It didn't work for me during the re-breaking process but after, I was floating on cloud nine.
"What happened?" Sam asked alarmed.
"He's a key piece of the main puzzle we came here to solve."
Sam eyed him suspiciously, taking in the fact that he was naked and his back was bent out of shape. This was too familiar to him.
"Come. Bring him inside," Rahbyn said as she led the way.
We all went inside of Saphire's redwood shack house. I've only came here a hand number of times. Everything looked the same as far as I could tell. Saphire had the style of a hippie. Everything was psychedelic. They probably had every color known to man in this house. Following Rahbyn, I took Jeremiah to her bedroom and placed him on the bed. Sam followed along.
"What's your name young man?" Sam asked him.
"Jeremiah," he said trying to withstand the pain he was feeling.
"Has your pack been on Quileute lands?"
Jeremiah looked at all of us hesitantly. He looked over at Rahbyn and kept quiet.
"Oh that's Rahbyn. She's cool. You can talk in front of her," I reassured him.
He continued to look at Rahbyn cautiously. Unsure if he should answer. Rahbyn turned to face Sam and me.
"It's different here for the Makah people. Our people were not to take part in the activities of the Quileute's. We were to have nothing to do with your magic. When packs were formed, it was done in secret. As far as our people as a whole are concerned, these packs do not exist. If word got out about any of them, they could get banned from the land, or worse. Killed." Rahbyn turned her attention back to Jeremiah. "Go ahead. It's ok. Say what you can."
Jeremiah nodded in agreement as he proceeded.
"To answer your question sir_"
"The name's Sam." Sam added.
"Sam, to answer your question, yes, we were on your land. We were chasing down some mountain lions that ran to your rez. Once we caught and ate them, we heard some people coming nearby so we split up. A group of kids were coming towards me so I knew if I didn't phase back soon, they'd see me and probably run off screaming, drawing attention to the others. So I phased quickly and um…. Just walked back home. I don't know what the others did."
"Well that explains what Paul found," I said remembering what Sam said.
"Ok, how many of you are out…." Sam was interrupted by a knock at the door. The sudden strong sweet ammonia-like stench that burned through my nostrils gave it away as to who was at the door. What I didn't expect, when I opened the door, was the two extra additions that came along with Carlisle and Embry.
"Blondie. To what do I owe the pleasure?" I asked with sarcasm.
"Wipe that smirk off your face, mongrel. I'm here to make sure your mutts don't cross the line." Rosalie scowled at me.
"Ouch! Cinderella woke up on the wrong side of the coffin? Oh, I forgot. You're more like a sleepless beauty. So there's really no excuses for you then, huh?" Before she could hurl an insult, I turned my attention towards her partner in crime, cutting her off.
"What brings you here?" I asked Emmett.
"I'm here to make sure Rose behaves." He said with a smirk.
I turned my attention towards Carlisle.
"Good morning Jacob. Embry has informed me about the altercation between yourself and a member of another pack. Is he aware that I'll be aiding in his recovery?"
"He knows. Wasn't happy about it though. Hope you brought enough pain killers."
"I came very well prepared," he assured me with a smile. "May I?"
I stood to the side to let them enter.
"He's in the back room to the right." I said to him as he made his way down the short hall. Emmett and prom queen stayed in the living room. Embry remained at the door.
"Embry, we're good?" I asked him. I didn't like giving him an order since I know firsthand what that's like. But I had little options at that point and needed him to stay focus.
"Yeah, we're good," he said hesitantly. "Is Arielle here?"
"No, she took off not too long after I phased out. I don't know which way she went."
"Do you need me here right now?" Embry asked antsy. I already knew what he wanted to do.
"Embry, she could be anywhere by now."
"I don't care. I have to look."
I took in a deep breath. Embry was no good here if he couldn't get his mind off of Arielle.
"Go ahead. We got it covered here." I told him waving him off.
"Thanks Jake." He said graciously and took off.
Suddenly, the sound of a bone cracking invaded everyone's ears following a loud and horrifying scream of agony. Guest those pain killers didn't kick in for him either yet. The actual breaking is the hardest part anyway. As Jeremiah continued to scream out in pain, Emmett and Rosalie stood up alert glaring out through the windows. What the hell was their problem? I followed their eyes to what put them at alert and stopped dead in my tracks. I should've seen this coming. With bloodsuckers around, how could I not see this? Plus, it didn't help that Jeremiah was back there screaming his lungs out due to a vampire breaking his back. Their stench was all over the place. I was so busy making sure Carlisle's presence didn't cause Jeremiah to phase that I neglected to remember that he wasn't the only one that needed convincing. As I walked out in front of the house, I watched as eight huge black panthers, all with different sets of eye colors, glare back at the house. This wasn't good.
"Sam!" I called out.
Sam rushed out and froze in place. We needed to reason with them. They needed to know that these leeches weren't the bad guys. If anything they're sickeningly noble. Well, all except Blondie back there.
"You think they'll listen?" I asked Sam keeping my eyes on the pack before us.
"Not sure. I can go either way right now. Let's just try to talk to them, see where it gets us."
I nodded in agreement. Before I got the chance to get the words out to inform them of the situation, another scream came out from inside the house. Suddenly, the packs eyes turned pitch black. Then they charged forward for attack.