A/N: In case you have trouble deciphering the different quotations, it goes as follows: 'Standard thoughts', 'Wolf thoughts', "Speech", and Visions. I hope that helps.
Disclaimer: Twilight and all characters of this story are property of Stephanie Meyer. I have no rights to this work, and seek no financial gain from it.
Chapter Eleven: The Wolves
We all sat in silence for a while, unsure of what to say in relation to the news. The wolves are back. Is it really possible that I had visions of them? Could this Jacob person be real? I really did not want to think about that. The idea of facing the Volturi was scary enough for me. I did not even want to imagine losing Edward.
We were all still staring into space, lost in our own thoughts, when Carlisle's phone rang forty minutes later. Carlisle's voice was slightly strained when he answered, "Hello?"
I could hear Billy's gruff voice on the other end, "Carlisle Cullen?"
"Yes," Carlisle replied steadier this time.
"This is Billy Black. I have spoken with Sam and the elders and they have agreed that we should meet. Sam wants to be sure that the pack can recognize all new members, so he wants to meet in person. I will be there as well to represent the tribal elders. If you will meet us at the treaty line on the southwest corner of your land we can discuss a renegotiation of the treaty. Will tonight be good for you?"
Carlisle looked at Charlie and me and we nodded in agreement, "Yes, Billy, that will be fine. What time do you want us there?"
"Can you meet in about an hour?" Billy asked.
"Yes, that sounds good. We will see you in an hour. Thank you, Billy." Carlisle smiled, slightly relieved.
"Yes, well, see you." Billy said. I heard the phone click on the other end and Carlisle hung up.
"I guess it would be a good idea for us to head on out. That will give us a chance to have a quick hunt before we meet with them. It will be tense enough as it is, we do not need to be thirsty too." Carlisle suggested.
"Sounds good to me," Jasper agreed.
Suddenly I saw Alice's eyes glaze over and seconds later I was also pulled into a vision. We were all standing in a small clearing in the forest. A few yards away from us were three horse-sized wolves and a man in a wheelchair. The tension in the air was thick, but there was no aggression. I saw the great black wolf in the front nod his head and Carlisle said, "Thank you." Suddenly I spoke up from my place beside Edward, "Pardon me, but may I ask a question?" Everyone turned to look at me curiously. As quickly as the vision had started I was blinking in an attempt to refocus on my surroundings.
Both Edward and Alice gasped. Alice shrieked, "Everything just went black. We were walking to the wolves and then suddenly all of our futures disappeared."
"What?" Jasper asked angrily. "Do you mean they attack us?"
Alice was panicked, "I do not know, but what other explanation is there?"
"I don't understand, Alice. The vision I saw showed us meeting with them peacefully. There are only three wolves and a man in the wheelchair. I saw the largest wolf nod and Carlisle thanked him." I was confused, why would her vision be different than mine.
Alice and Edward furrowed their brows. Edward squeezed my arm, "Do you think you could show me this vision?"
"Sure." I opened my shield and replayed the vision in my head. Up until I asked the question anyway. I was not sure how he would take that. I closed the shield again after Carlisle had thanked the wolf.
Edward nodded, "She's right. I wonder why Alice's vision was black. Bella saw it clearly."
Alice groaned, "What is wrong with me Carlisle? Am I losing my gift?"
Carlisle was thoughtful, "I doubt that is possible Alice. Maybe you just can not see the wolves and since Bella is a hybrid, like they are, she does not have the same problem. We will look into it the more after the meeting. For now, we need to get moving or we will be late."
We made our way toward the meeting place, feeding as much as possible along the way. When we arrived at the location, the sight before me was exactly as I had seen in the vision. There were three horse-sized wolves standing in a triangle formation next to a man in a wheelchair. I still could not figure out how they managed to get a wheelchair in the middle of the forest. I suppose one of the wolves carried him while in human form.
The nine of us cautiously approached the line, leaving a few yards between us and them so the wolves would not feel overwhelmed. The idea of three against nine with a human present was sure to make them uncomfortable. We approached slowly in a loose formation. We wanted to appear as none threatening as possible.
All the mated couples had their hands interlocked casually, including Edward and me. Carlisle and Esme were slightly in front of the rest of us as Carlisle is the leader of the coven. As the mind readers of the group, Edward and I were behind them with Charlie on my right side. Jasper, Alice, Rosalie, and Emmett took up the rear. I made sure to stay tuned into the minds of the Quileutes.
Carlisle stepped forward with his palms up in a gesture of peace, "Thank you for agreeing to meet with us. I hope you are doing well."
The wolves growled lightly, but they nodded. I could here them grumbling in their minds. 'Stupid bloodsuckers.' 'God do they reek.' 'There are so many of them, how can we trust them?' The man in the wheelchair's, who I now realized was Billy Black, thoughts were not much different from that of the wolves, but the words from his mouth were more polite, "We are. I hope the same fares for you and your…family." It would have been kind if not for the words in his mind, 'Hardly, stupid bloodsuckers, may they rot in hell.'
Carlisle smiled politely, "We are indeed well."
Billy continued, "Sam, our alpha," he gestured to the large black wolf next to him, "asked me to insure peace for he will need to return to human form for negotiations."
Carlisle nodded, "Of course, we mean no harm to you or the pack. We do, however, have a mind reader amongst our number. If Sam feels more comfortable in his wolf form, Edward will gladly translate for him."
Billy's eyes widened and the wolves growled in agitation. 'A mind reader?' 'Not good.' 'Well, at least I will not have to shift.'
Sam stepped forward a little, and nodded his great black head, 'That is acceptable, bloodsucker.'
Edward and I stepped forward next to Carlisle, and Edward translated, "Sam says that is acceptable."
The surprised and agitated grumbling rolled through the wolves again. 'Shit, he can read minds.' Edward and I chuckled.
Edward spoke the thoughts that crossed Sam's mind as he said them, "The original treaty mentioned five members. Were any of the new members created by the original five?"
Carlisle shook his head, "No. Alice and Jasper," he gestured to the family members in question, "found our family about many years ago and liking our way of life, joined us." Carlisle gestured to Charlie and me, "Charlie and Bella Swan heard about our family in the past and switched to the animal diet on their own. They moved to the area a few weeks ago and, as Edward has found his mate in Bella, they will be joining our family officially when the two wed after high school."
Edward translated again, "And these four are dedicated to not hurting humans?"
"Of course, that is one stipulation of remaining with our family. Many members of this family have never tasted human blood and the others are dedicated to never doing so again." Carlisle replied proudly.
The wolves were slightly impressed by this comment, but they did not trust us enough to believe he was telling the truth. Edward spoke for Sam again, "You mentioned something about the Swans living separately from you for now. Is his home and hunting grounds on your land?"
Carlisle shook his head, "No. Charlie is the new Police Chief for Forks. His home is inside the city and the surrounding forest is where they typically hunt."
Sam growled. Edward spoke again, "Inside the city? So close to the humans?"
"Their neighbors are not that close, and like me they have impeccable control. They would not have settled there if there was any danger." Carlisle soothed.
"I suppose you want us to stay off of their land as well?" Edward translated.
"Charlie?" Carlisle asked my dad.
Charlie was about to speak but I interrupted him, "Wait, Dad. Please, let me? This is important, I have seen it. Trust me?"
My dad looked at me curiously for a moment, but finally nodded his head with a sigh. I addressed Sam, "Staying off our land completely would leave too much of the Forks area unprotected. We only ask that you stay off of the immediate property, and most common hunting area behind the house, and that you do not enter the remaining hunting area in your wolf forms without prior notification. Any patrols done in the area will have to be made in human form. Rest assured that there will never be more than three of us hunting in that area at a time and we will attempt to steer clear of you when we are both in the area. However, if you are tracking a threat through that area, notify us of the need of your forms so that we may hunt elsewhere until the threat is nullified. We will be sure to notify you in advance if a friend is expected in that area."
The others looked at me with wide eyes after this little speech, even Billy and the wolves. To say they were shocked was an understatement. Sam's shocked thoughts stood out to me, 'Are they really so dedicated to preserving human life that they would allow us to patrol their property and even track down and kill a human drinker there? Do they really trust us that much?'
His thoughts were difficult for me to not answer despite the fact that it would show I could read minds too, "That is why I worded the agreement like I did. Human life is definitely worth preserving. We all feel that way. As far as trusting you that much, I certainly do. I am not sure if the others feel the same, but I do know that at least they would never mean you any harm."
Sam jerked in shock, 'She reads minds too? Shit! But…she does not seem like the others, more trustworthy almost. Thank you, Bella.' I smiled and nodded in appreciation.
Edward spoke aloud for the remainder of Sam's comment, "Does Charlie and Carlisle agree to this statement?"
They looked at me curiously for a moment. I tapped my forehead to once again assert that I had seen that it was necessary. Charlie sighed and nodded, "I do."
Carlisle was shocked, but went along with it, "Then I do as well."
Sam deliberated with the others for a moment. Edward translated, "Very well. Take the time tonight to mark the borders of the two separate areas of your land. We will not enter the inner area of your property without advanced permission and will only enter the outer area in human form unless prior notice is given. The new vampires Alice, Jasper, Charlie, and Bella will now be considered part of the Cullen family and will be included in the treaty that was put in place by Ephraim Black and is honored by Billy Black and current pack. They will be safe from the pack unless any one of the now nine members breaches said treaty."
Carlisle smiled, "Thank you."
Just as I did in my vision I spoke from beside Edward, "Pardon me, but may I ask a question?"
Edward gave me a sharp glance, but did not stop me. Sam was hesitant but eventually nodded, 'Yes, Bella. What is it?'
I smiled to myself. Sam was still referring to the others as bloodsucker in his head, but he was calling me by name. "Well, you see," I began hesitantly, "I have this gift that allows me to see things that may occur in the future." I heard Jasper and Rosalie hiss quietly behind me, they did not like me giving secrets away to the 'enemy.' I saw Sam's eyes widen slightly.
I continued, "I have seen a few things that involve the wolves, but a lot of it is confusing. Most of what I see indicates the possibility of a stronger alliance between us in a few years, but I can not be certain of why. Most of my visions include a russet-brown wolf. I guess I just wanted to see if he actually exists. I do not know his full name, but I believe his name is Jacob." Billy gasped and the wolves yelped in surprise. I blinked, "I guess you do know him."
Sam studied me closely, trying to determine if I was up to something. I could see him starting to notice the differences between me and the others and I glanced at Edward in alarm. Sam growled, 'What is this? What are you trying to pull? What are you?'
I sighed, "I am sorry, Sam, we should have told you sooner. We try to keep that information a secret for my protection from certain vampires who would like to hurt me. Can I have your promise that you will tell no one outside of this meeting and your pack of the information I am about to share with you?"
Sam narrowed his eyes for a moment, but then finally nodded, 'As long as this information does not endanger my people, you have my word.'
I sighed, "I guess that will have to do. You see, I am a vampire hybrid – half vampire/half human. Charlie is my biological father. His mate, my mother, was human. I am like the rest in most ways, but there are several differences. I have a heartbeat and blood in my veins. Instead of being cold, my body temperature runs at a typical one hundred and ten to one hundred and twelve degrees. While it is difficult for me to become injured, I can be, but then I heal very fast. I also sleep, though not as much as your typical human."
"There is really no reason for you to think of me as different from the others. I still drink animal blood and I am still fast and strong like any full vampire. That is the one reason we did not bother bringing it up. As far as my question is concerned, I am not trying to pull anything. I legitimately saw a stronger alliance between us in the future. I wanted to know if this Jacob was real because I have also seen him in a dream I had. I was not sure if I had pulled him from a prior vision or if he was a figment of my imagination." I furrowed my brow.
Sam cocked his head, 'Part human huh? We have never heard of that before. No wonder she seemed so different, so much more…human.' I smiled. His thoughts continued, 'Could this Jacob be Jacob Black?' he wondered. The boy in question flashed into his mind.
My eyes widened, "That's him. That is the Jacob I saw in my vision. He was the reason for our stronger alliance. The Jacob in my dream was in the form of a russet-brown wolf, but it was the same Jacob." I frowned at that thought, "He was protecting my daughter in the dream."
Sam looked confused, 'Your daughter?'
I furrowed my brow, "Well, I do not have a daughter yet obviously, and I am not even sure if I am able to have a child or not. But yes, he was protecting my daughter in the dream. Something about…an imprint…? I don't know." I shook my head, annoyed at the confusing jumble of visions I have yet to be able to organize in my mind.
Billy gasped, "Imprint?" He looked at Sam, "You don't think?"
Their thoughts were in a whirl. 'Jacob…Imprint…Bella's daughter…Her mate is a bloodsucker…No way…Jake imprint on a bloodsucker's child…That would certainly unite us, we would be like family then…Impossible.'
"What does that mean?" I demanded annoyed.
A female's face flashed in Sam's mind, the image was filled with such love and devotion that I could not help but smile. Then his mind flashed to Jacob and the great wolf sighed, 'Imprinting is when a werewolf finds his soul mate. There is no bond stronger between him and his imprint.'
I guess that explained the packs thoughts then. I looked at Edward and he was scowling. I admit the idea of any daughter of ours being mated with a werewolf did not exactly appeal to me either. Of course, the feeling that I got whenever Jacob appeared in a vision or dream was not one of disgust or anger, it was one of friendship and familial love. I also knew I could trust my daughter with him no matter what.
Maybe it was not quite so bad. After all, I was not even sure if any of this was actually from the visions at all. Maybe I saw him in the visions and just pulled him into my dreams. I would not know for sure until I pieced these visions together better.
I sighed, "I guess that makes sense. Of course, like I said, that part was from the dream. I am only certain of our alliance and future friendship because of the visions. I can not be certain I will ever have a daughter or if it is even possible. I know Jacob is a central figure in developing the friendship, but I do not know why."
Sam was doubtful in his thoughts, 'I do not know of anything that could cause us to be friends with a bunch of bloodsuckers other than that. Bella seems okay, but she is part human. She is different. What could Jacob do other than imprint to bring us together? I just do not see it. Maybe all of this has been a dream and she is confused. Friends with bloodsuckers, I doubt it,' He scoffed.
"Maybe you are right, Sam. Maybe I am just confused. It is not important at the moment anyway. Like I said, that is a few years in the future. Maybe I'll see more before then. Anyway, thank you for answering my question." I said genuinely grateful.
Sam's thoughts softened, 'You are welcome, Bella. Ask Carlisle if that is all?'
I relayed Sam's question to Carlisle. He smiled, "Yes, thank you again, Sam."
Sam nodded. Edward translated for him, 'You are welcome. We would appreciate it if you would leave first. I have to shift to carry Billy back.'
"Of course," Carlisle replied. "Take care."
"You too," Billy called as we turned and made our way back to the Cullen house.