What if you could go back and have a second chance at love?
What if you could be normal again?
What would you be willing to leave behind?
Life after the 'almost war' has returned to normal for the packs.
Unfortunately, nothing is ever that straight forward when Leah is involved.
Decisions must be made and risks must be taken, but first it's time for a reality check.
Chapter One – Losing Grip
'You're late Black.'
'Jesus Leah! By five minutes. What's eating you today? You're normally such a happy person.'
'Screw you! Sarcasm is my thing: your bad attempts are more embarrassing than Seth's dancing.'
'Whatever; nothing is as bad as that! Speaking of your brother - where is everyone?'
'At mine; most likely sleeping, eating, invading my privacy, making a mess - the usual. You guys are disgusting, you know that right?'
'Aw, you love us really. You're like a really volatile mother hen.'
'If that's the case, I should get the benefits and be able to order you around.'
'I said 'like', not 'are'. Besides, I'm not one of them; I'm more like the dad.'
'You're the dad? Ha!'
'What's wrong with that?'
'Err, nothing! Except you couldn't organise a piss up in a brewery. You really think you could manage Seth and Dumb and Dumber?'
'Yeah, together we could.'
'Together? No way! If we're playing Mamas and Papas then I'd be divorcing your sorry ass. Joint custody - that's the way to go these days!'
'Divorce? That's harsh Leah! Think of the kids. Besides, I think we'd make such a happy couple.'
'What planet do you live on? You've met me right? I'd kill you! No, divorce is safer.'
'I can't believe you would give up on us that easy! After all the effort I would put in to get you to marry me.'
'Jake, you have the attention span of a goldfish. There is no way you would have the follow through to convince me you were nothing more than a moron.'
'You'd be surprised what I'm capable of if I want something.'
'Yeah, sorry, I forgot about your obsessive tendencies.'
'That's not fair.'
'That's life! Now quit this stupid game before I point out all your faults.'
'Is that the only comeback you have Jake? 'Whatever?''
'Just drop it Leah.'
'Yeah, well, until now, I was actually looking forward to your company. God knows why.'
'Oh come on, it was a joke. Haven't you learnt anything over the years?'
'Sure, sure; life's a bitch and so is Leah.'
'That's more like it!'
'Ha ha, what's the catch? You just agreed you're a bitch.'
'I know, so don't milk it! What's got your pant's in a twist anyway? Is the Leech loving not going as planned?'
'Leah . . .'
'What? Don't get all moody on me again Black. You moan at me for not trying with your infant imprint, so god damn you I'm trying. It might not be conventional, but it's all I've got.'
'Yeah, well, Alice saw something that changed things – a lot of things.'
'Huh? Alice can't see us.'
'No, or Nessie. At least she never has before.'
'So what did she see?'
'She saw Nessie and-'
'-Shit! Jake, it reeks of Leech here. It's not the Cullens.'
'Leah, where are you?'
'I'm at the creek.'
'I'm on my way. Don't move.'
'I'm fine; calm down already. I'll track it and you can catch up.'
'No! Leah, stay where you are. You don't know how many there are.'
'No Jake. They'll be getting further away by the second.'
'Leah, don't move. You are not fighting vampires on your own. THAT'S AN ORDER!'
The minute the words left Jake's lips, I found myself frozen.
'COME OFF IT BLACK! LET ME UP.'
'NO! I'm not far. I'll be there in three minutes.'
'The rate you run, that will be five!'
'Knock it off and pay attention. Do you hear anything?'
I stopped mentally insulting Jake and listened to my surroundings. There was no sound, but I turned my head to find four crimson eyes staring at me; a female and male vampire were standing on the other side of the creek. Their heads were cocked and they were looking at me curiously.
"Hello wolf." The female addressed me with an English accent and a cruel smile which stretched across her face.
If it wasn't for the smell and lack of personal hygiene, the female vampire would have been kind of pretty. Her thick blonde hair was so long that it went down to her waist, but it was layered with dirt and leaves throughout. The clothes she wore clung to her petite frame and were travel worn and muddy. Her feet meanwhile were bare, and from her looks, I would have guessed she was changed in her early twenties. Most disturbing though, was that she had a sickeningly innocent face that was marred by the evil sadistic look she now had.
The leech's mate was stood extremely close to her, guarding her with a pleased expression. He too was blond, but extremely tall and toned. In some regards he looked like a fallen angel. Both of them did, but I knew better - everything about them screamed demon.
"I don't think the mutt can speak." The man said and excitedly squeezed his partner's hand.
"No baby, me neither, but it's one of them, there's no doubt." The look she gave him was just as delighted.
I immediately started to growl in warning, but to my horror they suddenly crossed the creek. It took them only two strides to make their way across and before I could blink they were walking towards me.
"There, there, good doggy. If you know what's best you won't fight us. We might even make it quick for you." The woman laughed shrilly.
I could feel Jake screaming in my head as I tried to back away.
'LEAH, GET OUT NOW!'
'Fuck you Jake, it's not like I'm trying. It's the alpha command; I can't move you idiot!'
'SHIT! YOU'RE RELEASED!'
The new command did just that and my limbs came to life. I was no coward, but I wasn't suicidal. I didn't have the upper hand right now and needed to get some distance. Once I got to a better spot, I could make my attack. Unfortunately, I was too late. The one second delay was all they needed. I turned tail and felt myself being pulled back by my hind leg.
'Leah, I'm almost there. Two minutes, that's all!'
I clawed at the ground with my front paws and kicked out with my back legs. I was hoping to get some leverage and get clear of their grip, but excruciating pain filled me as I moved. I turned to see the female vampire had crushed my hind leg and I howled out in pain.
She looked to her partner. "Oh, this is even better. Hunny - it's the bitch! We mustn't toy with this one; her pack won't be far.'
'As you say my darling.' He kissed her briefly before they both returned their focus to me.
I felt a notch of dread rise in my stomach and tried to turn my body to fight (flight was no longer an option). Amazingly, I somehow managed to twist myself in her hands, all the while trying to ignore the pain in my now broken leg. I even managed to get a chunk of the woman's shoulder in my jaws and tore a part of her away with much satisfaction.
In return she cried out in shock, yet within seconds I was being assaulted again by both of them. It didn't even matter that I was the fastest and smallest in the pack, for once it was working against me. I could feel my hope fading when they simultaneously attacked my back and forced me to the ground, the strength and pressure was too much for me. There was no logical way to survive the onslaught and as I thought this I felt them tearing at my sides with their hands and could feel warm liquid seeping out onto my fur.
'Leah, one minute that's all. Fight girl!'
Believe me, I really was trying!
I tried to push my body up several times, but they were just too heavy.
I tried to turn and snap at them, but their movements were too quick.
I was trying every defensive move I knew, but they anticipated everything.
'Jake, it's not working. It's like they know us! This was planned.'
'I know. I saw it all. I'm almost there.'
Jake's voice was suddenly drowned out by the female leech shouting, "NOW HUNNY!"
The next thing I felt was my whole body searing with pain. I was still pinned on my stomach, but somehow managed to turn my head to see the cause. To my horror, both of the vampires had sunk their teeth into me.
"She tastes disgusting." The boy vamp said as he spat out my blood onto the forest floor.
The woman didn't speak, but I could feel that she was still attached to me. I tried to fight again, but my body was paralysed and burning all over. I knew Jake could hear me, but I had to be strong.
'Oh my god! Leah, you've been bitten.'
'It's ok Jake.'
'Ok? Leah every part of you is screaming in my head. Don't you dare tell me that. Just hang in there.'
I could no longer make out the world around me. I didn't even know if the bloodsuckers were still draining me. My vision and sense of feeling were failing. 'Jake, why is it dark out?'
'No it isn't! Open your eyes.'
'They are open. It's all dark.'
I was desperately trying to fight my way through the dark veil that was now shrouding me.
'Shit . . . Leah . . . talk to me ok?'
A new sensation hit me all of the sudden; 'It burns.' I screeched in my head.
I couldn't help but let out a howl this time; the pain was shooting through every part of me.
'Everything Jake. I can feel burning; it's everywhere. It hurts. Make it stop! Please make it stop!'
I would have given anything, done anything, if my alpha would just stub out the pain. Nothing happened, although I could finally hear the faint sounds of a wolf snarling around me and somehow felt the blows of battle through the ground.
'Jake, where are they?'
''They are gone. You're safe; I chased them off.'
'Where are you?'
'I'm here Leah.'
'I'm right next to you. Can't you feel me, I checking over your wounds?'
'I can't feel you Jake - only the fire! It's all flames and darkness! Oh my god . . . my body is on fire! Put it out! Put it out! Please . . . I'm begging you! I'm sorry! I'm sorry for everything, for being a bitch, for being a shitty wolf! I'll do anything, please just make it go away! It burns!'
I was willing to sell my soul if only the pain stopped. I could barely think straight, reality was getting further and further away from my grasp. The ability to focus and feel anything but pain was quickly failing.
'Leah, I need you to phase back.'
'I can't. I don't know how. It hurts.'
'I know it does. I really need you to phase back though. It's like normal; come on you can do it.'
'What?' Jake's mind was shocked.
'I can't do it. Command me.'
'CHANGE BACK NOW.'
Through the scorching heat, I felt a shiver and knew I was human again. The pain changed immediately and rocketed through my new form. I had no idea what other injuries I'd suffered. I could feel nothing except for the venom coursing through my veins. My eyes still saw only darkness; however I felt a cool body around me and some motion. The burning suddenly ceased and all feeling was now gone. The only thing I had left was some basic awareness and it was a welcome relief.
"Is Carlisle here?" I barely managed to whimper.
"No Lee, it's just me." Jake was gone though and in his place an angel's voice spoke through my black night.
"You're cold." Compared to the burning, the ice cold skin on my savior was like bliss.
"Leah, it's me, Jake. You've got to listen ok? You've got to hold on. I'm running you to Carlisle now. Your temperature is off the scales."
I didn't understand; the voice said it was Jake, but it didn't sound like him. I think it was a lie - people always lied. They were tricky - little tricky tricksters. Always shadows and mirrors - no, this wasn't Jake, he wouldn't sound like that, would he?
Now that I came to think of it, I couldn't actually remember what Jake's voice sounded like; or Seth's, or mum's. What did they even look like? Everything was black.
Hang on . . . Black? That was it; Jacob was a Black. Renesmee Black - yes, she was going to be his wife one day. Leah Black - no, no, that was wrong, very wrong. It was all very confusing and I couldn't believe how tiring it all was. At least the pain was all gone; it was nice and numb and I just wanted to sleep. I'd feel better tomorrow: sleep was my friend. "I'm tired now. Can I go to bed?"
"No Leah, you've got to stay awake."
"Where's Jacob Black?" I needed him.
"You do know angels don't swear?" I didn't like my angel cursing; why couldn't he just take me to bed like a good guardian.
Uh oh! Now my angel was mad; "Leah Clearwater, cursing has never offended you before. Don't you dare get all moral now."
I could feel myself drifting into a dream. I wanted to keep listening to the calming voice that held me, but I couldn't - it was too much like hard work. I couldn't even hear the angel anymore. In fact, I think I was in a hospital because all I could hear was the steady beep of a machine that was until a familiar voice started calling out to me - I remembered the voice, it was someone I knew and loved, but I couldn't picture a face. Yet, the way my name sounded on their lips . . . it wasn't right . . . that voice now called another name.
The old familiar voice faded out, only to be over taken by another booming one. It was getting very confusing.
"Leah! Leah! WAKE UP, GOD DAMN YOU WOMAN!"
I came around to darkness again, but the same cool body was holding and shaking me.
"What? I was sleeping! It's night time leave me alone." I wanted to swat the person away from me, but my body was too heavy to move.
"Don't you dare go to sleep. You stay with me."
I could feel the command and power laced within the words, but I knew I couldn't do it. I realised it was the angel and he was angry. I didn't want him angry, I really did want to stay with the angel, but suddenly that steady beep was still lulling me back into my dream.
"Angel?" I called out.
I heard a sigh and cool breath hit my face.
I wished my angel would stop sounding so sad.
"I'm going to sleep now. Can you tell Jake, that maybe I wouldn't divorce him after all. Leah Black sounds nice."
"No, no, no! You stay awake and tell me yourself."
"Yeah, Leah Black . . ." My lips mumbled.
"Leah, don't do this. I . . ."
Beep . . . beep . . . beep . . . beep . . . beep . . .
"Leah, can you hear me?"
I knew that voice, it was the one from earlier, but he shouldn't be here.
"Come on Lee-Lee. Squeeze my hand if you can hear me."
I squeezed his hand nonetheless; even Sam Uley was better than no one right now.
"Jake," I croaked. My voice didn't sound the same though.
"Oh god. Doctor! DOCTOR!" Sam was yelling now.
Why didn't he just call Carlisle by his name?
I tried to open my eyes. They were extremely heavy, but after several seconds I managed to open them a tiny bit. Harsh light came sweeping in. It was too bright and I tried to lift my arm to shield my eyes, but they also were too weak and heavy.
I heard someone enter the room; "Leah, I'm Doctor Manning. Can you hear me?"
"Where's Carlisle?" My throat felt dry.
"Who's Carlisle?" The male doctor asked someone. I knew it wasn't me.
I couldn't believe it. The idiots had brought me to a real hospital. I had to get out before they realised I was a freak. I tried to move, but my body didn't react. Immediately, panic started to set in and I heard the beep increase in line with my heart.
Sam's voice cut through. "Lee-Lee, it's ok. Everything is going to be ok. You've got to calm down."
"Stop fucking calling me that Uley," I snapped, pushing the beep higher. I used almost all my energy, just to turn my head and scowl at him. My eyes were blurred, but I could make out that dumb face he wore.
"Sam, why don't you step outside? Remember we talked about this, don't take it to heart." Doctor Manning sounded sympathetic.
"No! Do take it to heart you dog," I spat and felt tired immediately.
"Leah, you need to calm down. I know this is disorientating, but you've been out of it for some time. I need to do some tests first and foremost."
Doctor Manning continued to poke and prod me much like Carlisle always had; he checked my eyes with a light and got me to flex parts of my body. I was worried that my legs and arms could barely move: only the smallest twitches happened.
"What do you last remember?" he questioned.
"I don't know . . . I guess, I was in the forest with my alp- my friend, and we were attacked by an animal." I was groggy and lying wasn't easy. I had to protect the secret though, or Jake would kill me.
"Right. Ok Leah, this is going to be hard for you to understand, but everyone will help you. Every step of the way, ok?" The doctor was clearly leading up to something big.
I nodded. Did I have a terminal illness? Could shape shifters get sick?
"Leah, what date is it to you?"
I worked it out and told him.
"Err; how old do you think you are?" He was confused.
"I'm 24 for God's sake." Did he think I was an idiot? I might not pay attention to the current president or anything (I had bigger worries), but I was damn sure I knew my own age.
"Ok. Leah, you need to keep calm. I'm going to go through everything bit by bit. First, you're safe, but you're going to be in and out of consciousness for a few days. Nothing is going to seem real. This is the hard bit." He was hesitant.
I still couldn't open my eyes properly and my throat felt like sandpaper.
"Hey doc, before the bad news, can I have a drink?"
I felt the doctor lift a cup to my lips and took a gentle sip. I wanted more, but the cup was gone again.
"You're going to have to take fluids and food easy for a while. The thing is . . . you've been in a coma for the last year. You're twenty Leah." His voice was deadly serious.
"What? Did Emmett set this up? Pranks over now. Well done. Can Carlisle take over now?" I hurt too much to find it truly funny.
"I don't know any Emmett. It's hard to take in I know, but it's two thousand and five Leah. We'll go through it all in detail, one step at a time. Everything is ok. You need to sleep right now though. It's going to be a long road to recovery. The fact that you're conscious and talking straight away is a very positive sign!" Doctor Manning looked like a kid at Christmas. Even the blind could see the size of his grin.
He left the room and I could feel sleep taking over me again. I heard the door swing and in the corner of my blurry vision saw Sam enter.
"Hey gorgeous. The Doctor said you're going to be just fine. You have no idea how good it feels to see you awake." He was crying and held my hand again. "I'm going to be here every step of the way. Your parents are now on their way as well. I love you so much baby girl."
Only one word caught my attention, "Parents?"
"Yeah, I just called Harry and Sue." Through his tears he smiled.
My head spun. Harry? This joke was turning sour. Unwillingly, I was overcome with tiredness and before I could even reply. I felt myself falling back into the blackness.
Beep . . . beep . . . beep . . . beep . . . beep . . .
"She's fighting!" Carlisle's voice chimed; it was like music compared to Doctor Manning.
"If she dies, I'll . . ." Jake was . . . angry? Sad? I couldn't tell, but I could hear him now.
"I know Jake. We'll do what we can. We've got the venom out, but I don't know the extent of the damage already done, or how it really affects wolves in the long term. Normally they would be gone already."
I definitely preferred this doctor and tried to call out to him and Jake, but my voice was lost and my eyes were still black. I felt myself wavering and fell back into my sleep confused as to why everyone was telling me different things.
Hi everyone, so this is my second fanfic. It's running alongside my other story Amaguq and I have promised myself I will finish that story before I throw myself into this one. I guess I decided to post this chapter just to get some feedback and see if anyone's interested. I will try and upload chapter 2 at some point and I'm working on chapter 3, although gradually. Anyway, let me know what you think – good or bad all reviews welcome as long as they are constructive. xxx