I was nudged. The smooth shoulder woke me from my fire induced haze, I heard Old Quil clear his throat and I knew it was time.
I had to show respect for the traditions and legends of our people, this was the first time I would be hearing these words since I know now, that they are true.
Even though I had a hard time to believe this nonsense, I had no choice too. The love of my life was directly involved. I was a product of the very essence of wolves. I was imprinted on.
Though, I am still somewhat bitter about the idea. Jared never laid his eyes on me twice before this wolf thing, so why did I earn a second glance just because of a majestic wolf bond?
It made me question his love. His devotion, the undying thirst I visibly noticed in his eyes were not of his will, but of something forced upon him. Something he had to do.
Of course, he was bound to me in ways in which life and death hung together, I couldn't deny him without feeling a boatload of guilt. The look in his eyes when I threw everything we had together made me want to beg and weep for forgiveness, but all I had to do was kiss him.
So I was stuck. I was glued to this man for the rest of my life. But I never saw it that way. He was glued to me. He would have never chosen me. And because of that, my heart will always have second guesses whenever I look at him. Despite this, I still manage to love him uncontrollably.
I shook my head and decided to catch up with the legends, as I looked up I noticed something else.
A burst of jealously flew around me like a small tornado, but an ice cold flash of sympathy erased my irrational sense.
She had been through hell these past few months, and ironically, she remained pretty as ever. Her long onyx like hair remained as smooth and dark as the very stone itself, I couldn't help but notice how my wispy ends seemed so mediocre and juvenile in comparison. Her coppery skin dazzled in the fire light, and I often found some of the other guys staring at her with awe. Her gorgeous eyes were laced with thick lashes that emphasized her surreal beauty. I was always jealous of Leah and her wholesome good looks.
However, looks can be deceiving. If someone who didn't know us saw her, the would have never guessed the shit she was through these past months. She was beautiful, but she was terribly unlucky.
Her father, Harry Clearwater only recently died, and my heart understood her. I knew what it felt to lose someone so close to you, however her pain only ripened more; I learned that Harry had a heart attack in direct relation to her phasing into a giant wolf, another thing triggered by her unbearable heartbreak.
Sam Uley. A man I held in my highest forms of respect, yet a person I had undying disgust for. He was the reason so much chaos happened, yet the greatness had been shoved upon him whether he liked it or not.
Leah was in pain right now, yet her ability to keep her face disinterested grew impossible for me to comprehend. It seemed as if her years were far beyond mine, as if she aged these weeks. As if she grew more mature, more aware, and more carefree with the world now that she knew how cruel it had been to her.
She was strong and I admired that.
I twisted my head from her as I felt fresh tears prickle in the back of my eyes, I felt her agony in the slightest and it made me weep for her.
Unfortunately, I turned my head only to notice someone completely opposite to Leah. Someone who had too much given to her, that she was too careless to realize the consequences. She didn't deserve half the people in her life; she'd only end up hurting them anyway.
Bella Swan, doe-eyed and pale, clueless and weak...words that could never describe the fiercely faced, tan Leah...words that could serve to be unfair.
I knew Leah before this. I knew she was kind, she was happy, she was in love with Sam and she held those important to her close. I knew she was unselfish in many ways, she had the highest expectations for her little brother Seth, she was there for him, she loved her father and mother.
Just a small town girl. Just a humble, small town girl.
Bella had moved here only recently and from what I've heard, caused the pack to go through hell. Especially Jacob.
To sum it up, she fell in love with a vampire. Not the smartest of all things, but love is blind, I knew that now, and I understood her devotion for Edward and I could not bring myself to judge her for that.
That wasn't it.
He left her. She felt an unbelievable amount of pain. She was weak. I still couldn't bring myself to shun her for this behavior, but I couldn't help but compare.
Leah had it worse. It was obvious; she felt Bella's pain in losing everything she has ever known, but on top of that, she had to witness it. She had to hear Sam think about Emily non-stop. I shuddered. She even has to sit there and watch the two closest people in her life skip happily in the sunset, knowing her rightful place was stolen from her.
I looked back at her and continued admiring her courage, her pride shined and I knew I had the utmost respect. Leah may have seemed detached from the environment around her, but I knew she wasn't the soulless creature Bella had once been...I knew she still had thoughts, full processing ideas that passed her day-by-day. She was still human. She wasn't pathetic enough to take her life or jump off a cliff. She was optimistic enough to keep moving forward.
I continued comparing. Nope, that wasn't why I disliked Bella so much...I couldn't blame her for falling in love, I also couldn't blame her for mourning the loss of him
I also didn't have the heart in me to hate her for coming to La Push and selfishly grabbing Jacob's adoration for her personal need. In order to avoid the inevitable and wither away uselessly, she came and infected Jacob with the depression that hit all of us like a sickening wave.
In fact, that is exactly what I would do. I would find an outlet...I would smother my pain in someone else's face, I would make them feel sorry for me, I would make them love me. It's pathetic, I know. But it's also realistic, and any one who denies it is to immature to admit the truth.
Even Leah had an outlet... a way that often lead to Jared cursing her name with indignation. I on the other hand couldn't bear the thought of losing Jared, but I forced myself to be in Bella's shoes and realized she was doing the thing that a weak minded individual would do. Just like myself, when it came to Jared.
However, I could blame her for one thing.
It would have been pleasant for her to stay here in La Push- I enjoyed her company, she wasn't a far cry from being a possible friend, but I couldn't stand her for one thing.
He came back.
Despite her love for Jacob, she threw him away as if he didn't mean anything. As if he wasn't worth the months of months they spent together. As if his love was invalid compared to Edwards.
Of course, Jacob didn't feel that way. He loved Bella more than anything in this universe and to learn that she disposed of him like a chew toy made me furious beyond belief.
I couldn't stand her for it. It was injustice. I could see it in his eyes, he held so much for her. He cared for her and she didn't deserve it.
Her flimsy, damsel in distress presence made me fill with rage, who the hell was she to do that? How could you throw someone so innocent, someone so happy into the realm of depression you were just feeling? How could you? I grounded my teeth together. Why was she even here? How could she show her face again?
I chose to not confront this issue anymore, like I said, love was blind. As much as I might want to, I could never understand Jacob or her. It made me too angry, anyway.
So much pain was happening here, yet the quiet feeling of unity shattered the distrust between us. We were a family (minus Bella), and as much crap we were going through, we were still together.
Out of frustration, I shut my eyes slightly and wished to hear the rest of the legends that I initially came here for. Unfortunately, I was distracted by a slight scribbling noise.
I forcefully opened my eyes irritably to see Emily Young's scarred face jot down notes fiercely. I scorned at her dorkiness, who writes notes at bonfires?
Despite my shyness, I was a bubbling person filled with huge opinions and foolish pride. I knew when to stand for myself, and I knew when to open my mouth...this was one of the reasons why I never got Emily's shitload of kindness.
She cooked for the boys, and one of these days, she even asked me to help her with dinner. I was cranky that day, I had way to much homework for my own good and my simple refusal made her raise her eyebrows in shame.
Her silent treatment only made me angrier
"Excuse me?" I had replied to her back "I think I'm busy right now with my homework, don't you notice Seth and Brady over there playing cards? Why didn't you ask them?"
Emily simply replied "They're tired. They've been patrolling all day,"
That only made me snort "They don't look tired. If they were tired they'd be sleeping right now. Besides, this is the 21st century, I can do whatever the fuck I want to do..."
"I didn't say you couldn't-"
"Obviously, you asked me to help you with cooking because I'm a woman and that's my place in life right?"
"No," Emily denied, a silly grin plastered on her face "your mother told me you make the best lasagna, I was hoping you'd give me some pointers"
I snorted. Her cooking was perfect. What a load. Instead, I stomped from her household. What was I doing there anyway? I heard Brady and Seth snicker as I left, I shot them a glare and they looked away frightened.
I felt bad after that day. I was in a cranky mood. Jared and I got into a fight, I argued with him. I doubted this imprint thing and I told him I didn't want anything to do with him, I hurt him.
I was disgusted with myself, so I decided to run to Emily's and make up with him, but he wasn't there. I sat there waiting for him while finishing my homework but he never came.
It was a rough patch, but I asked Emily for forgiveness and she did gladly. It was then that I realized that she was the sweetest person I knew, and all that has befallen on her, was not her fault.
Sure, she caused Leah a great deal of pain, but I couldn't bring myself to resent such a kind person. I knew she regretted Leah's pain, I knew she had the same doubts I had...and because of this, she talked to me.
She expressed the same feelings she had as I did and noted that it wasn't worth all these petty arguments. She told me to love Jared not just for myself, but for the tribe. And truly, no one would love me like Jared does.
I admired her, but I knew she was hurting as well. Not physically, like her scars implied, but emotionally for Leah. I knew she would never be happy until Leah was.
A part of me expressed remorse, but another stubborn part would always side with Leah. I found her situation to be way worse than Emily, and despite the fact that Emily was the kindest person I knew, I could never forget that Leah didn't deserve anything that has happened to her as well. And to me, that was of greater value than eating muffins everyday.
But then, there was another part of me decided that understanding the people around me was pointless. They were all too difficult to get, anyway.
And that was when I chose that I was me. Little, average Kim with no drama, no baggage. Just me and Jared. All I needed was Jared.
I was content.