Disclaimer: Stephanie Meyer and Hollowgo own these characters.
Soooo...I'm just going to leave this here...
I have no words to express my apologies for how long it has been, and I know many of you wish to kill me, but here is what I promised the people who over the past year still continued to review and PM me. It's YOU folks who kept me from wanting to give up on this story all together. I know that hiatus was terrible, and I can't promise how often I will update because these are the longest chapters of any story I've ever written, but I can promise I will continue to keep up with this story.
If you wish to ever contact me to get my butt into gear don't hesitate to PM or review. You can also contact me on the moondance tumblr. I'll be using it more often and checking in with you folks more.
I still look forward to hearing what you have to say and any ideas of things you'd like to see happen with this story. I'm trying to get my mind back into this Bellice bubble, so any ideas help.
That being said, if you are interested in Glee, (which is what you lost me to) and read any Faberrittana, I invite you to my other ffn. Just search Author-Fyeahfaberrittana
I hope all is well, and I hope you forgive me absence.
Please leave your reviews they do help so much.
"Back the FUCK up!" Alice snarled leaning over in front of me in a protective crouch. "MINE!"
My eyes opened from releasing me from the dream state I had currently been in. I blinked and rubbed my eyes, as my dream replayed through my mind. It had been a memory, more than a dream, of when we met Amara. What Alice had growled at her. Mine. As in referring to me, what exactly did she mean by that?
I felt Alice shift behind me, and realized she was still cradling me in her arms. I was completely comfortable, and her scent was everywhere. I sighed in contentment, I could get used to waking up so well rested, and I only hoped it would last.
"Good morning, Bellsy." Alice chirped excitedly. I smiled and relaxed back into her embrace.
"Good morning, Alice. Has anyone ever told you, you're far too excited in the morning?" I questioned teasingly. Alice shifted and held onto me gently, she slipped out from behind me, but replaced her body with several pillows and she sat beside me. She smiled widely at me and took my hand.
"Well no, you're the only human I've been with in the morning. Everyone else finds my upbeat attitude rather adorable." I giggled at that as she did too.
"Of course, Alice. What isn't adorable about you?" I said, and then blushed realizing what I'd said. Alice just smiled brighter.
"I know right? So you see it too." She said with a chuckle. I rolled my eyes fighting off the blush. "How are you feeling, now? Are you in pain?"
"I'm actually great. It doesn't hurt like it did last night. Thanks for…you know…holding me…err icing it?" I said lamely. Alice smiled sweetly again.
"Of course, Bella. I felt awful for not doing it last night and then you woke up in pain." She said and a frown took over her feature I squeezed her hand and she met my eyes, then I proceeded to roll mine.
"It isn't your fault. You know you Cullens have a terrible habit of blaming yourselves for things that aren't anywhere near your fault." I said and she smirked.
"I suppose your right." She said and her nose scrunched up adorably. "So, does that mean you're feeling well enough to make your little venture today?"
"My wha- oh. Right, Jacob. Yes. I still want to do that." I said with a sigh and ran my hand through my hair. "I hope he'll talk to me."
"I think he will, Bells. He cares about you a lot, and I know if I were in his shoes, it would hurt me to have to be away from you like this. It does hurt." She said, and whispered the last sentence. I squeezed her hand again and she looked up at me with a sad smile. I returned it with a happy one.
"Hey, you're here. That's what matters." I told her, I didn't know how many times I'd have to reassure Alice that I didn't blame her or harbor any anger towards her for leaving, but I would tell her for eternity if I had to. I never wanted to see her sad because of me.
"Thank you, Bella." She said I cocked my head to the side.
"For what?" I asked and she shrugged, and her brighter smile returned to her beautiful golden eyes.
"Nothing, being you." She said and I blushed.
"Oh…err, you're welcome?" I said and she giggled.
"So, let's get you up, changed, and get some breakfast and drugs into you." She said with a wink. I laughed and she was up in a flash on my side of the bed and leaning over to help me up. I flipped the blankets off myself and Alice gently slid her arm around my shoulders and helped me sit up. I bit my lip as a sharp pain resonated around my rib cage. She looked at me sympathetically, and then helped me to get out of the bed.
Once I was standing I was able to keep from moving my ribs as much as possible. If I stood relatively still, I was fine, but changing my shirt wasn't going to be easy. Alice looked me over and then nodded to herself before flashing into the closet. She reappeared in front of me holding another button up shirt, and a pair of jeans.
I stood there and she looked at me expectantly. I looked at her curiously and she sighed.
"You're going to need help. You can't exactly lean over and pull the jeans up yourself." She said. As her words sunk in the heat in my face did as well. She was right I would need help, and it wasn't as if Alice hadn't helped me before. She was the one who bathed me when James attacked me. Yet, I still felt embarrassed to show my body to her. I felt a cool hand on my cheek and Alice had me meet her gaze.
"If you'd prefer I could have Rosalie or Esme help you." She said sweetly. I blushed further and started twiddling with my thumbs.
"I-if that's okay… Preferably Esme." I said and Alice smiled warmly and placed a kiss on my cheek.
"Of course. I'll send her in." Alice said and handed me the clothes. I took them and she left. I breathed a sigh of relief. I had no idea where my sudden shyness in front of Alice had come from, but I was thankful for her being the kind hearted pixie she was, and not pushing the subject. My musing was interrupted by a knock at the door.
"Come in." I said and Esme walked in with a warm smile on her beautiful face, her caramel locks cascading around her shoulders.
"Need help, dear?" she asked gently. I nodded sheepishly, but began to unbutton Alice's shirt. It was only then that I even realized that I had not replaced my undergarments from last night. I blushed further and Esme smiled at me and moved to stand behind me.
"Thank you." I said shyly.
"No problem, sweetheart. Let me slid this off you." She said and she helped me shrug the shirt off careful. I only winced once, and it was my fault for moving too quickly. She then handed me a new bra and I slipped it over my shoulders. She hooked it on me loosely.
"You're going to see, Jacob today, yes?" Esme asked as she helped me slide into the new button up shirt Alice had grabbed. When I got it on Esme walked in front of me, with the same warm smile on her face. I buttoned up the garment and nodded.
"I'm glad." I paused on the last button and looked at her curiously. She smiled and finished buttoning the green shirt for me. "I'm sure Alice has told you the same thing, but if Jacob is important to you, than we shouldn't be ones to keep him from you."
I smiled at her and then she gestured to my pants. I blushed again but undid the button and zipper. Esme made quick work of taking them off and helping me to replace them with the dark wash jeans Alice had picked out. She then helped me change my socks and stood up.
"Feel better?" she asked and I nodded again. "Good. I'll send Alice back in and finish your breakfast." She then leaned forward and kissed my temple before walking out the door. Not a second later Alice reappeared in front of me with her eyes alight with joy.
"Shoes!" she said and disappeared into her closet once more. I rolled my eyes and walked to the bed. I sat down carefully, and luckily it didn't hurt too terribly bad. Alice flitted in front of me and kneeled down grabbing my foot. She slipped on the black converse and neatly tied the laces.
"There, nice and tight, so you won't fall down…well they won't be the reason you fall down." She giggled and stood up I narrowed my eyes at her.
"Gee, thanks." She rolled her eyes and held her hand out to me, which I took and she helped me off the bed. She led me towards the door and I stopped her briefly, still holding her cold hand firmly. She looked at me and cocked her head to the side.
"What is it?" she said curiously.
"I had a dream last night. It reminded me of something you said the other day when we met Amara." I told her, she continued to look at me, and I paused I still hadn't decided to ask her fully, so I guessed that was why she wasn't sinking into a vision. I sighed and ran my free hand through my hair.
"You called me yours. You kind of growled it actually." I said and Alice straightened up.
"Oh…err. I-I um, yeah. I meant," Alice was stuttering and if I wasn't mistaken the look in her eyes told me if she could, she would be blushing. "I meant that you were with me, that she couldn't feed on you." She ended more strongly having gained composure. Though I wasn't sure why she was so flustered. I just nodded and accepted her answer, it seemed true and reasonable, and it meant she was just looking out for me.
"Oh, well, thank you." I said and smiled at her. She seemed to relax and smiled largely in return and then continued to tug me out the door.
When we got down the stairs, the smell of my breakfast was filling the house. It smelled like warm pancakes with hot coffee. I smiled and Alice continued leading me towards the kitchen. I was correct; Esme had prepared me pancakes and had coffee brewing in the pot. Alice sat me at the table and Esme brought over my breakfast.
"Thank you." I told her and she nodded with a smile, kissed my head and flitted out of the room.
Alice and I were silent as I ate. She simply sat there and stared at the table. I was used to her looking at me in fascination whenever I ate, but today she wasn't.
"Are you alright, Alice?" I asked putting my fork down and looking at her concerned. She looked up but gave me a confused look.
"Are you okay?" I repeated, reaching for her hands, which were currently folded together on the table. When our hands made contact I felt the familiar shock. This time however, it was stronger as it hummed up my entire arm to my shoulder. I looked at our hands strangely for a moment, before Alice readjusted so my hand was cradled in both of hers. The hum continued for another moment, but began to die down as I looked away. I turned my gaze to Alice's face to see her looking at me with her usually happy smile in place. Her eyes were lit in the familiar dancing honey. I felt myself get lost before her voice brought me back, from what felt like an eternity but was really only a second.
"Nothing is wrong, Bella. I'm fine." I eyed her skeptically for a moment, but then she dazzled me with another happy smile and I couldn't help but believe her and return the smile.
"Are you done?" she asked removing one of her hands and pointing to my plate. I nodded and she quickly stood and went to the sink to wash it.
I sighed and ran my hands through my hair. I was so nervous about seeing Jacob. I was just hoping he would actually talk to me, or give me a moment at all. I missed him and I wanted my friend back. Especially with everything that happened recently. After my trip to Florida to visit Renee, I just felt like so much went to hell in a rushed blur.
"Hey." Alice's voice pulled me back from the flurry of thoughts that had taken over my mind. I looked up at her face and she moved closer to me and placed her icy hand on my cheek. "Where did you go? Are you okay?"
I relaxed into her hand and my eyes shut as I sighed. I loved whenever Alice's simple moves would offer me comfort like no one else could. I opened my eyes as she removed her hand.
"I'm still not sure Jake will talk to me." I said frowning. She sighed and pulled me gently to my feet.
"Well why don't we find out? Are you ready?' she asked. I nodded running my fingers through my hair again.
Alice and I left after Esme gave me another dose of my medication. The slight vampire beside me was actually driving the speed limit which meant it would take at least fifteen minutes to get to the border line. I was grateful for this; it gave me a few moments to think of what to say to Jacob. If he would see me that is. I just stared blankly out the window shield as the forest and everything passed by. It was silent the whole way, save for the radio murmuring softly in the background.
The next thing I knew, before I could get a thought straight, the car was stopped and turned off. I looked around to find that we had parked in the same exact spot where Alice had come to pick me up the day Jacob had shunned me. I heard Alice's door slam and in the same moment my door opened. Alice looked at me with a large smile on her porcelain face.
"Wait right here." She said and I nodded. Then she disappeared, and I looked around the area, but I didn't see her. A few minutes passed and Alice still was nowhere to be seen. I started getting fidgety so I carefully hauled myself from the seat and stood by the open door. I took another look around and saw nothing.
Another few minutes past and then something in the trees caught my eyes. Alice appeared beside me in a split second and had a smile on her face, though her nose was scrunched up in displeasure. I looked at her questioningly.
"Did you see that?" she asked and gestured towards the direction I'd seen movement. I nodded.
"Kind of." She nodded in return.
"Well, that was one of the wolves. He came to investigate, as I said they would with a leech so close to their territory." She said with a smirk. "Anyway, I told him I wouldn't leave until Jacob came. He seemed none too pleased, but I'm assuming he went to fetch him. Though I'm not one hundred percent sure, as it was a rather one sided conversation." I smiled when she finished.
"Thank you, Alice. But if he doesn't show up, we don't have to stay." I told her solemnly. She shook her head.
"As much as it stinks around here, I am not leaving until you get what you came for. If that means dancing up and down their smelly little line annoying them until all hours, that's just what I'll do. So be it." Alice said with a nonchalant shrug. I beamed and threw my arms around her. She wrapped me in a gentle embrace and we stood there for a moment.
"Thank you, Alice. You're the best. What would I do without you?" I said with my arms still firmly locked around her petite neck. She giggled, but then I felt her stiffen. I immediately dropped my arms and withdrew them to my sides with a step back. Alice didn't say anything for a second.
"Well, that took less effort than I thought it would." She said and then smiled at me again. Then she looked towards the trees and I followed her gaze, but didn't see anything.
"Come on." She said taking my hand shutting the door.
She tugged me towards the tree line and I followed nervously behind. We came to a stop about fifty feet from the road and Alice stood looking straight ahead. She looked tense, but then she looked at me and offered a small smile. At that moment my eyes caught movement ahead of us and I turned my head to follow it. Standing before me was a very large tired looking Jacob. He was wearing a mask that showed no emotion. I couldn't help the smile the immediately took over my features.
"Jacob!" I exclaimed happily and took a step towards him. He eyed Alice beside me and I looked over my shoulder to see her tense posture but her face was as passive as Jacob's. She smiled at me again and nodded towards my friend, dropping my hand. I returned her smile in full and walked towards Jacob. His eyes didn't leave Alice as I closed in on him. I stopped just a foot short before he finally looked at me.
"Hey, Jacob. Thank you for seeing me." I said. He nodded, but said nothing. "I've missed you." I told him and he sighed.
"Yeah, I've missed you too, Bells." He said but then his eyes left me and shot back to Alice. I looked back over my shoulder to see her still standing in the same position she had been in, tense, but not threateningly so.
"Feel free to leave. I'm not going to hurt her." Jacob snapped. I frowned. Were we already back to that?
"I know you won't." Alice said this seemed to catch Jacob off guard; it caught me a little off guard too. Alice finally relaxed and took a few steps forward, before stopping again and looking directly at Jacob.
"I'm going to leave, but I wanted to say something to you first. Personally." She told the much taller boy in front of her.
"I'm listening, leech." Jacob snapped.
"Thank you." She said, and both Jacob and I were immediately confused. Jacob lost his stern face for a moment before regaining his composure. Then he eyed the tiny vampire skeptically.
"For what?" he asked, his voice not nearly as steely as it had been a moment before. Alice sighed again, but remained relatively neutral.
"For keeping Bella safe when we didn't. For being the friend that I wasn't…for saving her life…" Alice said the last part so lowly I nearly didn't hear it. Jacob looked at her more stunned than before. "I'm sure you don't believe me when I say this, but, I owe you. I can't be more thankful for you and for what you did when we left. If it weren't for you, it pains me to think what could have happened to Bella. So again…thank you, Jacob."
Jacob, Alice, and I stood in silence for a moment. I looked from Alice to Jacob, he seemed to be thinking hard. Then he took a deep breath and looked at Alice again and nodded.
"I'd do anything for Bella. It had nothing to do with you." Alice nodded.
"I know. Still, thank you." She said then she looked at me. "If you need anything, just call. I'm going to get going and give you two, time to talk."
"Okay, I will." I said and walked back over to her. I wrapped my arms around her neck and felt hers slither around my waist. I took one deep breath of her scent and then she released me. "Thank you, Alice."
"Anything for you." She said and smiled at me. She then hopped up on her tip toes and placed a kiss on my cheek, the next thing I knew she was gone. I turned around to see Jacob looking at me.
"That was weird." He said and then he smiled. I narrowed my eyes at him. "What?"
"You're smiling. Why are you smiling?" I asked. His smiled fell and was replaced by a rather sheepish look. He sighed and ran a hand through his short hair.
"I'm sorry, Bella." He said stunning me.
"Sorry?" I questioned.
"Yeah, I'm sorry. For everything; the truth is I really do miss you too. A shit ton. And it's sucked not being able to see you. I miss spending time with you working on the bikes, or just hanging out in general. I made a huge mistake, but you have to believe me when I say, I thought it was the right choice at the time. Now I'm not so sure." Jacob said and took a step towards me.
"I get that you missed the leeches, I guess I was just pissed that you got back together with him after everything that happened between you two. It's like none of that mattered, like nothing you went through mattered, and I got angry that you could just allow that. I don't want to stay away from you anymore. It's too difficult in truth. I was hardly able to do it this long." My head snapped up and I glared at him.
"You mean to tell me you didn't actually want to not be friends anymore?" I asked him with a hint of the annoyance I felt in my voice. He nodded and grimaced.
"Yeah." He said lamely and I threw my hands in the air.
"Are you god damned kidding me? I've been totally torn up over you ignoring me, I lost my best friend, and you're telling me you didn't even want that? What was the point then?" I snapped and he took another step towards me.
"I'm sorry, Bella. I really am. I thought it was the right thing to do. I mean if you're associating with them, it makes things kind of difficult. My kind…we're made to kill them." He told me. I knew he was right, that it would be difficult, however I knew it wasn't impossible, if he cared about me as much as he said he did, he could work it out.
"The Cullens aren't a threat to you, you know that." I told him crossing my arms.
"Do I?" he said and cocked an eyebrow. I rolled my eyes.
"Stop being such a child. They're decades older than you are. Have they ever done anything to you, or your tribe for that matter, in the time they've been here that proves that they're a threat?" He sighed and rolled his eyes this time.
"They're vampires, Bella. As long as they don't break the treaty, we can't kill them. Why isn't that good enough for you?" he asked.
"Because you want to kill them! I don't understand that! They're good people. If you would just give them a chance, you would know that too!" I exclaimed and tugged on some of my hair with my growing frustration.
"Look, Bella, it's not that easy, I wish it was. That would make everything easier, but it's not." He said and then paused looking at me and I saw a flash of my Jacob come to the surface. It stunned me and kept me from snapping back at his lame argument. "But I'm willing to try and remain your friend while you're friends with them. I can't stay away from you anymore. It sucks."
"B-I-You. Ugh! I'm still mad at you Jacob Black. There's no way I'm letting you off that easily." I said as I put my hands on my hips and glared at him. Then he smiled my favorite Jacob smile and pulled me into a big hug.
"Fuck! Jacob, put me down!" I said in a shaky voice and he put me down hastily. He took a step back and eyed me with concern.
"What is it? What'd I do?" he asked and I cradled my ribs leaning over trying to make the pain go away. I felt a few tears glide down my cheeks as I tried to take in calming breaths. After a moment the throb finally died down to a dull stinging and I straightened up wiping the tears away. Jacob continued to look at me with worry etched across his features.
"Bells, what happened to you?" he asked. I took as deep a breath as my injuries would allow and spoke.
"Well, it's kind of a long story. But there's a few things I need to tell you. Actually it really sucked for me too, you not being around. Some things happened where I really could have used my best friend. I mean I have Alice, but some of the things…I just felt like I couldn't talk to her about, it was killing me not having you, Jake." I told him and his shoulders slumped.
"I'm sorry, Bells. I really am. But I'm here now. Care to take a walk?" he asked and gestured towards the forest. I sighed, and nodded. The meds would be enough to let me walk for a bit. We headed in some unknown, at least to me, direction. Luckily for me we were walking on a trail. It was beautiful out here. The trees were tall and the trunks thick and covered in green moss. I took another deep calming breath of the cold air.
"What happened, Bells?" Jacob asked me after a few moments of silent walking. I looked up at him as we continued, and then back to the trail in front of me.
"Edward and I broke up." I said flatly. It still hurt me to think about it. To think about hurting Edward, and to be the reason for his leaving his family. I noticed Jacob was no longer beside me and I stopped and looked back over my shoulder to see him with his hands balled into fists and shaking slightly. His jaw was tight and he spoke through gritted teeth.
"That bastard. He. Left. You. Again?" he said and I quickly realized where his head was going.
"No, no! Jacob calm down. I left him. Please calm down." I said and took a step towards him. When the words left my mouth Jacob looked momentarily shocked and he stopped shaking.
"Wait, what?" he said confused. I took a deep breath and nodded towards the path, asking him to follow me. I started walking again, and Jacob fell into step beside me.
"This is why I had wanted you there a few weeks ago." I said as we walked together.
"Weeks? How long has it been?" he asked incredulously. I sighed.
"About two weeks." I told him.
"Two weeks." He said seemingly to himself. "I'm sorry, Bells. I'm sorry I wasn't there for you."
"It's over with now, Jacob. Angela and Alice did what they could. And well, Edward left. I haven't seen him since then, and neither have the Cullens." I told him and I heard him scoff. I looked up at his face and saw him scowling.
"Of course he ran away again. What a fucking asshole." He growled.
"Jacob!" his eyes snapped to me. "Don't blame him. I don't…I felt awful…I mean…you were kind of right…when we got back together, I did so without thinking."
"What do you mean?" he asked in a voice straining to remain calm. I ignored it an answered him.
"I don't know. I mean I guess I didn't really think about what his leaving truly did to me."
"I'll say." Jacob sneered.
"Look, it wasn't easy leaving him. I still love him, I really do. I just…" I said trailing off on the last sentence.
"You just what?" Jacob pressed.
"I'm not in love with him anymore. When he left me…he took that part of me with him. I just didn't realize it until later." Jacob and I continued to walk. He was being oddly silent. I was surprised that he wasn't bashing Edward or calling me an idiot for not seeing it sooner, however I was grateful.
"I'm sorry, Bells. I know it was probably hard for you, and don't take my sympathy as giving two shits for that leech, because I don't, I just-I know it wasn't an easy conclusion for you to come to." He told me sincerity shining in his dark eyes. I smiled at him.
"Thanks, Jake. It wasn't easy. I hadn't even paid attention to it either…until I went to Florida."
"You went to Florida?" Jake asked me surprised. I nodded.
"Yes, and Edward went with me. Renee brought the whole thing up, pointing out that I acted differently with him, as apposed to how I used to. I realized that she was right and it all hit me like a freight train. When I got back, I needed someone to talk to." I said and looked at him and he grimaced. I sighed and went on. "I would have spoken to Alice, but she's Edward's sister, and I wasn't sure how she'd react."
"She seems hunky dory to me." He said with a scoff. I shot him a glare.
"She's worried about her brother, and I didn't talk to her until after we broke up. She knew when we did though. She was upset I didn't tell her, because she says I'm her best friend and if something was upsetting me, she'd like to know. No matter what it is." I told Jacob this last part and smiled to myself.
"If you didn't have anyone to talk to what happened?"
"Well I wasn't going to talk to my human friend, Angela, about it, because I couldn't tell her everything, but after a while of going crazy on my own, I just decided I needed someone to talk to. Angela was there for me, and while I didn't share certain details, she ultimately helped me out."
"That's good. I'm glad you actually have human friends." He said and I rolled my eyes.
"Yeah, well, that's what happened. I finally talked to him, he got pissed and said something he shouldn't have, and then I got mad and said something I really shouldn't have, and I haven't seen him since." I said and ran a hand through my hair. The memory was painful; I hadn't meant to shout that at him. I hadn't meant to shout at him at all. The anguished look on his face was burned into the backs of my eyelids and I couldn't erase it.
"You're better off without him." Jacob told me.
"Jake, really?" I snapped growing more exasperated.
"Are they staying this time? You know it wasn't just him who left you, Bella." He said.
"I know, but as I have told you before, I need them, all of them. And Alice is my best friend, Jacob, as much as you are. I don't know what I'd do if she left me again…" I said and even thinking about Alice leaving me made the memory of the hole in my chest ache. I shivered at the feeling.
"Whatever, I'm glad you're not with him anymore though." He said, but then he smiled. "This means things can go back to how they were!"
"Jake, I'm still friends with Alice. I won't choose one of you over the other, and she doesn't expect me to. You better not either." I said to him trying to make him understand that things between the Cullens and I weren't going to just disappear.
"Sure, sure. Anyway, weren't you going to tell me about why I can't hug you?" I grimaced and he cocked his eyebrow.
"Remember the other day when I saw you in the woods?" I asked and Jacob nodded. "Well I sort of followed you."
"Oh, Bells, don't tell me; you tripped and hurt yourself." He said with a deep throaty chuckle and I glared at him.
"No, actually Victoria attacked me." That shut him up and he stopped walking again. I took another few steps before stopping and turning around towards him.
"What?" he seethed through gritted teeth.
"Victoria found me alone in the woods and attacked me. She fractured several of my ribs in the process." I said gesturing to my sides.
"How di- Bella, I am so sorry." He said anger evident in the set of his jaw, but his eyes looked upset.
"Jacob it's not your fault, it's mine for going into the forest alone." I told him. I was growing rather frustrated with everyone blaming themselves for my own stupidity.
"I should have known! Sam told me they'd chased her with one of the other leeches! Damn it!" He snapped then looked at me. "How did you manage to get away? And where were the Cullens?" he growled the last word.
"Another vampire saved me." Jacob's eyes went wide.
"What?" he asked surprised.
"She showed up and started fighting Victoria. Her name is Amara and she's staying with the Cullens, for now anyway." I told him.
"You're telling me some other vampire we don't know saved you? What if she's killed someone, Bella?" Jacob snapped at me.
"She hasn't." I said hurriedly and he eyed me. "She's like them, she doesn't kill humans."
"Of course not." He said with a scoff. "And where were they when the read headed bitch attacked you? Aren't they concerned about your safety?"
"Yes! But they didn't know where I was. They found me when Amara was fighting Victoria."
Jacob didn't say anything for a while. We just started walking again. Eventually the trail brought us to First Beach. We kept going until we reached a familiar sea bleached log. Jacob sat down and I lowered myself beside him. We sat like that in silence for a bit. I took a deep breath of the morning sea fresh air. A smile found its way to my face as a breeze swept through my hair. The briny scent of the beach consumed me.
"You reek." Jacob said and I narrowed my eyes at him.
"Gee, thanks, jerk." I said and then smiled when his pearly white one stretched across his russet skin. I took another deep breath of ocean air, and was welcomed by the mixture of sweet honey and chamomile. My grin widened and I held the collar of my shirt to my nose.
"That's what stinks, how can you stand it? It burns my nose." Jacob said and I dropped my collar and rolled my eyes at him.
"Well she smells amazing to me." I stated and he smirked at me.
"The midget you're talking about?" he questioned and I nodded.
"Anyway," I began changing the subject and he grinned more. "What's been going on in your life since I haven't been around? I caught you up, your turn." I said. Jacob's smile fell a bit and he sighed.
"That good, huh?" I questioned from his reaction. He shrugged.
"Yeah, I guess. This wolf stuff just keeps getting weirder and weirder." He looked out at the sea.
"Care to be a little less cryptic?" I asked and nudged him. He looked at me from the corner of his eyes and smirked. Then he shrugged.
"Things are just getting…more complicated." He said.
"Well tell me what's going on." I said in a more serious tone, catching that something was bothering him.
"You remember how I told you that some of the guys from the tribe were changing? How I changed?" He asked and I nodded. "Well, we thought that it was just the male side, and generally speaking, it is." He told me and then stopped, I looked at him curiously.
"I'm with you so far." I told him and he ran a hand through his hair.
"Do you know who Leah Clearwater and Seth Clearwater are? Harry's kids?" he asked me and again, I nodded.
"Yeah, Charlie was telling me about them. He said Sue was having some troubles. They've been hanging out with you more, right?" I relayed the information Charlie had offered up and Jacob nodded.
"Not just me, but the whole pack. Seth and Leah phased." He said and let the sentence sink it. That's when I got confused and he must have seen the look on my face because he chuckled and went on.
"Yeah, that was most of our reactions. Though a bit more surprise would have been in there."
"You're saying Leah Clearwater is a werewolf?" I asked incredulously. He nodded. "How? When?"
"Around when we stopped talking. As for the other part of that question, none of us have the slightest idea as to why. The council doesn't even know, as far as we know there's never been a female wolf before. But it's been just great having Leah around." He told me and the last sentence was laced with sarcasm.
"Okay, I hope you're not just saying that because she's a woman." I said and glared at him. He looked at me shocked.
"What? No. That's not it's; it's more of…well where things get even more weird and complicated." He told me and I gave him the look telling him to continue. "It's hard to explain, Bella."
"We've got time." I pressed and he heaved a deep breath.
"Alright, but trust me, it's weird." I nodded. "I'm giving you the short version, but Leah is…kind of a bitch. And pardon the pun, but it's true."
"Jake!" I scolded; he held his hands up in defense and looked at me sheepishly.
"Listen to the story before you jump down my throat, I never used to think that, but it kind has to do with the wolf telepathy thing. Let me start from the beginning." He said. I just crossed my arms and waited for him.
"Sam and Leah were together for a long time. They were in love and everyone thought they'd eventually get married. They were happy, and Leah was nice, she's a great person, or she was. Now she's just bitter since Sam and her broke up."
"Sam and Leah were together?" I exclaimed shocked. I had only ever known Sam with Emily; they were so perfect for each other. Jacob nodded. "If they were so in love why did they break up?" I asked, though I had an idea. Jacob looked at me.
"Here's where it gets tricky. Sam and Leah were in love. Sam was in love with her. Then he phased. When he finally got control of himself enough to return to his human form, council talked to him. They told him what happened, and what he was. He and Leah were still together, and things were fine…for a little while." Jacob paused and took a deep breath.
"Then Emily came."
"Emily? His fiancé?" He eyed me.
"I'm getting to it." I nodded and he went on. "Emily came down from the Makah reservation to visit her cousins, the Clearwaters. This all happened before I phased, so I didn't know yet. When we did phase, Sam tried not to think about it much either. We just knew that Sam and Leah had broken up and thought thatafter a while he and Emily fell in love."
"What? Same ditched Leah for Emily?" I asked shocked, and somewhat annoyed. How could he do that?
"No, no. That's my point." Jacob stood up and started pacing back and forth. "See, Sam never wanted to leave Leah, they really were in love. But when he saw Emily…well she was the one."
"But Emily is Leah's cousin. How could Sam do that and just know she's the one?" I pushed and he looked at me and stopped walking.
"Sam didn't just leave Leah because he thought he might love Emily. Sam imprinted on Emily." He said and I stopped my train of thought and grew confused.
"Imprinted on Emily?" I repeated his last sentence as a question and he nodded. "What exactly does that mean?"
"Imprinting…it's one of those weird wolf things. It's supposed to be rare…though we're not as sure about that anymore." He said but the last sentence was whispered.
"I don't follow, Jacob. Explain." I told him.
"When one of us imprints on someone…it's not like just falling in love. It's finding your other half. You'll do anything and be anything to make her happy. Nothing else matter's except her and her happiness. She's the only thing that keeps you going." He said and sat back down next to me gazing out at the ocean.
"Sam and Emily are soul mates. Emily resisted at first, being Leah's cousin and they were as close as sisters, but you can only ignore an imprint for so long before you start to feel…incomplete. Sam felt like the worst person in the world, even he tried to fight it at first, but he couldn't for long. It's hard to describe just how strong the pull is."
"It sounds like you know how it feels…" I suggested. He kept his eyes locked on the ocean.
"I just know Sam's thoughts."
"Poor Leah." I said and then Jacob looked at me.
"I thought the same thing…at first. Then she phased." Jacob let out an annoyed breath. "Now we all have to deal with her inner bitterness all the time. She's so hateful about the whole thing."
"Wouldn't you be too if the person you loved and you thought you were going to marry left you for your sister?" I asked and narrowed my eyes at him.
"Yeah, I would. But, now even that she knows Sam didn't mean to, that he fought it, she still makes him feel like shit at every possible moment, and we all get stuck in the middle of it." Jacob said sounding more annoyed.
I sighed and looked out towards the murky grey water thinking about what Jacob had just told me. I looked from the water to the thick dark clouds. I still felt bad for Leah; even Jacob thought she was being a bitch. Having something like that happen to you. Having the love of your life and the future you thought you'd have just completely ripped away from you. That was something I could relate to and I knew how much it hurt. I knew how that could change a person's outlook on things. I ran a hand through my hair and looked back at Jacob.
"Sounds like a lot has happened to us both." I said and he gave a hollow chuckle and looked at me.
"Seems that way." He responded.
"How about we don't ditch each other anymore, it doesn't seem to work out so well." This time we both laughed for real and Jacob nodded.
"Deal." He said and after we stopped laughing I was able to speak again.
"You said you weren't sure if it was as rare as the elder's thought. Why is that?" I asked and Jacob looked at me again.
"Well they thought it was some rare thing that happened, and if it did it would probably just be the alpha." He told me and I nodded encouraging him to go on. "Only it isn't just Sam. Quil imprinted too. When I tell you this, don't jump to conclusion, I may need to elaborate on the whole imprint thing a bit more. Okay?"
"Okay." I said skeptically.
"Quil imprinted on Claire. She's Emily's niece…and she's two." He said and looked at me. I waited for him to go on and tell me how old she really was until I realized he was telling me the truth. My eyes almost popped out of my head.
"See. You're prejudging!" He said and held his hand up. "It's not what you think. I told you an imprint is your soul mate, that's true, but a soul mate isn't always just a person you're romantically involved with. Quil will be whatever Claire needs him to be. Whether that's a brother, a friend, or a protector, and she'll be the safest kid around."
"That's…so weird." I said and Jacob glared at me.
"Quil isn't in love with her, Bella. He loves her, but not like that. Not yet, I mean when she grows up she might fall in love with him and vice versa, but right now, he's merely like a brother to her." He told me. I took a deep breath and tried to wrap my head around this new information.
"I see." I said after a minute. "Is that the only other person?"
"No." Jacob shook his head. "Jared imprinted on some girl in one of his classes. It's funny because she'd been crushing on him for a while now."
"So there're three of them that have imprinted?"
"Yeah, I'm starting to worry about it." He told me. "It feels like the choice is completely taken away from you, ya know?"
"I guess. I couldn't say I know what that's like." I said and gave him a sympathetic look. "But wouldn't you like to find your soul mate?" Jacob looked at me and his eyes took on a softer look.
"What if I already want someone?" he said looking at me deeply. I swallowed hard and looked away. Not this again.
"I don't know." I said and it fell silent for a few minutes.
I watched the waves pull back and then crash into the pebbles of the beach several times. They looked so dangerous, but at the same time the beach always brought me peace.
"So you graduate this week right?" Jacob asked finally breaking the silence. I looked at him and smiled.
"Yes I do, actually." I paused for a moment thinking about what Alice had told me then Jacob looked at me quizzically.
"What?" he asked.
"We're having a big party, you should come." I told him.
"We as in who?" he said and his eyes narrowed.
"Me, Alice, and…Edward." I said sheepishly. Jacob laughed.
"Yeah, I think I'll pass." He said.
"Come on, Jake. I want you there. It's not just going to be them, the entire senior class is coming. I want my best friend there. Alice said you could come." I told him and then he looked at me shocked for a second before regaining composure and a mischievous smirk.
"Well now that you said she said it was okay, I have less reason to go if I can't piss off the Cullens." I rolled my eyes.
"I didn't say it wouldn't annoy them, just that she said you could come." I told him trying to convince him. "I'd like you to come to the ceremony too. You and Billy can go with Charlie. I mean the school gives us each four tickets, and my mom and Phil can't make it. Just come, Jake. Please." I stooped to begging and Jacob laughed heartily.
"Well, fine. If it means that much to you I will go to the ceremony, and I'll think about going to the stupid party." He said and smiled widely at me and I returned it.
"Thanks Jake!" I said and wrapped my arms as far as I could around his broad shoulders. He in turn gently wrapped his arms around me. It felt extremely hot being wrapped in a hug by Jacob after having been away from him for so long, and being used to being closer to the frigid temperature of Alice's body. We dropped our arms and then Jacob snapped his fingers.
"Oh! I have a surprise for you!" He said excitedly. I looked at him and cocked an eyebrow.
"What is it?" He shook his head.
"If I tell you it won't be a surprise. You'll find out on Wednesday. I'll bring it with me to the ceremony." He said with mirth dancing in his deep set brown eyes. I just shook my head.
"Alright then." I said and he smirked.
Jacob and I spent another hour or so talking on the beach catching up and just handing out. After a while we went back to his place, and spent some time watching T.V. and had lunch. Embry even came by and seemed happy, a little too happy, to see me. The three of us watched some lame made for T.V. movie before I started to get uncomfortable and my sides started to ache a little more.
"Hey, Jake. I think I need to go home now. I'm starting to feel it." I said and gestured to my sides. He looked at me and frowned, but nodded.
"Alright, I'll take you home." He said.
"Actually can you just take me to the border so Alice can pick me up. I was staying with them and she has my meds." I said. Jacob's face looked annoyed but he shrugged.
"Sure, sure. Whatever, let's go." He said and hauled himself from the chair. "Get out of my house, Embry." He said jokingly to his friend.
"Ah, whatever. Later, Bella." Embry said before leaving.
Jacob and I followed after him and climbed into his rabbit. I pulled out my cell phone and scrolled to Alice's name. Hitting call I held the phone to my ear; she of course answered on the first ring.
"Hey, there Bellsy. What's up?" she asked cheerily.
"Can you come get me now? I'm starting to feel sore and I'd like to go home. Jacob's taking me to the border." I told her.
"Sure, of course. I'll be there in a few." She said and I heard an engine start. I smiled.
"Thank you, Alice."
"No problem, Bells. See you in a minute." She said.
"Okay." I said and hung up.
Jacob and I were already driving down the road to the line. I was had a fair idea of where it was now. At least ten miles from La Push. When we got there Alice's Porsche was already parked in the turn out and she was leaning against the hood. She smiled widely as Jake brought the car to a stop. We got out of the car and Jacob walked over to my side.
"Thank you for coming today, Bells. I'm glad we got things settled. I'm sorry for what I did." He said sheepishly. I smiled and nodded at him.
"Of course, Jake. You didn't think you'd be getting away from me that easily did you?" I asked teasingly and he smiled widely. A gust of wind came from Alice's direction and Jacob's nose scrunched up and he looked over at the pixie.
"Hey up wind, you reek." He said with irritation in his voice. I rolled my eyes. Alice just smirked at him.
"I'll see you later, Jake." I said and wrapped my arms around his hot torso. His large arms draped carefully over my shoulders and he hugged me back.
"Later, Bells." He said and kissed the top of my head. I blushed and pulled away. I waved at him and walked towards Alice.
She didn't look away from me the whole time, and as soon as I crossed the invisible line she had her arms around me. I was surprised, but never the less I wrapped my arms around her easily. I felt the shock in reverberate through my whole body and I gasped. Alice dropped her arms and took a step back. I almost whined at the loss of contact but the look on her face was one of worry.
"Did I hurt you?" she asked concern lacing her voice as she looked me over. I blushed and shook my head.
"Err…no, I'm fine. You just surprised me I guess." I said lamely. She smiled again. I looked back over my shoulder to see Jacob glaring at Alice, when I looked back she didn't seem to notice and I just waved to Jake once more, and headed towards her Porsche.
She opened my door for me and I got in. The next moment she was next to me handing me a bottle of water and a pill. I looked at her and smiled.
"Thanks, Alice." I said taking the medicine. She smiled again and started the car and we sped off.
The rest of my day was spent with Alice. She stayed with me that evening and when Charlie got home, she made us dinner. She thought up yet another undeniable excuse as to why she wasn't joining us in our meal. We all talked and enjoyed our time together, Alice told Charlie a bit more about the party, and I rolled my eyes on several occasions. Alice had taken the idea of 'party' and added her own extravagance.
Night came quickly along with my exhaustion from the day and the meds. Alice and I were in my room. She had already 'left' and returned, though I hadn't asked her to. I was very pleased that she'd stayed. We were currently lying on my bed under the covers listening to the rain on the window. Alice wrapped her cold slender arms around me and I relaxed into her grasp. I was content, yet I couldn't help but wonder…
"Alice?" I said quietly.
"Yes, Bella?" she responded just as softly, though her voice was much more sweet than mine.
"Why aren't you with Jasper right now?" I asked and took in a breath letting my senses get filled with her scent. I felt my entire body relax like it only did when she was near. I still couldn't fully understand why this was, but I would figure it out, damn it.
"Jasper is spending time with Kate and Amara." She said her voice sounded smooth and relaxed as I felt. I felt her body start to vibrate and I smiled at the sound humming in my ear that was resting on her shoulder.
"Why are you purring?" I asked and she stopped.
"I'm sorry, is it bothering you?" she said and her voice lost some of its contented tone. I shook my head.
"Not at all, it actually soothes me." I said and smiled wider, though I didn't know if she could see, however I heard her purring pick back up.
"It's because I'm very comfortable and relaxed." She said and her voice sounded as smooth as silk. It was quiet for another minute before I pressed on with my earlier musings.
"Jasper has been spending a lot of time with Amara. She seems nice." I said I felt Alice freeze and her chest stopped vibrating again, and I worried maybe I'd said something wrong.
"Jasper is just making sure Amara is comfortable here, and helping her with some things. She's much newer to our lifestyle than even he is, and she's trying to train herself more, that's it." She said rushed and I frowned.
"I didn't say he wasn't…" I trailed off and lifted my head from her shoulder to look towards her face. I could see her ivory skin in the pale glow from the silver moonlight and she was looking back at me. She had a mask of neutrality in place, but her eyes looked anxious. I lifted my hand and touched her cheek; her eyes relaxed some at the contact.
"Hey, what's wrong, Alice?" I asked and she closed her eyes. "Do you think something's wrong with Jasper?"
I felt a pang of guilt hit my stomach as the bitter feeling settled itself in my chest. I swallowed hard willing it away. Alice was my focus right now. She opened her eyes again and they looked sad.
"No, nothing is wrong with Jasper. I would know." She said and gave a half hearted smile and looked away from me. I frowned further.
"Then what's wrong?" I pressed and she looked back into my eyes. It was then I felt the familiar tingle reverberate through my hand where it touched her face, along with where ever else we made contact. I felt like could even almost hear it this time. I continued looking into Alice's honey eyes, and she back. We remained like that for a few moments, I just studied the beautiful liquid gold shimmering in her eyes, until she blinked and looked away again. She took a deep breath and shifted a little.
"Nothing is wrong, Bella. Why don't you try and get some sleep, hmm?" she said gently.
"Alice…" I began but she looked at me and smiled.
"I'm fine, Bella, truly. Go to sleep." She said and leaned up to kiss my cheek, the tingle it left on my skin stunned me.
"I-uh, okay." I finally conceded, flustered. What was happening to me? I removed my hand from her face and curled it to my chest as I reclaimed my spot on her shoulder. She rewrapped me in her arms and her purring began once more.
It didn't take long for the sound and feel to lull me to sleep, though I couldn't help but continue to think about why my body was reacting this way…whenever Alice touched me.