A/n: um. . . well I'm sorry it took so long to update. A lot has happened recently so I'm just getting back in the habit of updating regularly. Anyway, hope you all read and review anyway, I promise it will still be a good chapter.
D: I do not own any Twilight copyrights.
Rosalie was already in the bathroom when the others arrived, humming quietly to herself as she washed the sleepy babe. Her eyes sparkled with growing love, and her usual spitfire temper seemed to dim as she handled the girl with the utmost care.
Her family didn't even blink at her sudden change. They were well aware that at the moment they were watching her live her greatest desire. Perhaps that was why all the Cullens now found it difficult to interfere in her happiness.
"Rose," Emmet began slowly, approaching his love cautiously as he prepared to tell her what he knew she would not want to hear, "We know she's young but what if her father comes looking? Keeping a baby is a little different than keeping a stray." He chuckled weekly as several of the pack members behind him huffed half-heartedly at his subtle comment.
Her eyes snapped onto his with a severity he had never before seen of her; their midnight hue only dimming when her mate winced slightly at the intensity. "She needs a home," The blond remarked curtly, her jaw already setting into its familiar stubborn set. "Would you have agreed with leaving her in the woods?"
The large man's throat closed up and he realized he didn't know what to say. Of course he didn't want that; but what would happen to Rosalie if her hopes were ripped away? Above all, that is what would break him. Carlisle stepped forward and for once Emmet humbled himself enough to let him take the stand; silently thanking his father figure for sparing him from what he knew would be a difficult answer.
"We don't want that Rosalie," The blond man stated softly, sincerity practically radiating from his form, "None of us want to abandon her, and I don't think Emmet meant it that way." Emmet nodded as his name was mentioned, wanting his wife to know that this was true, but did not interrupt as Carlisle continued. "We just want to know you will be able to handle what may come. Even though she was alone today don't assume she won't be looked for."
For once Rose seemed to take a moment to think, her hand still rythmetically rubbing the baby now asleep in the bath. Finally she reached in and lifted the pale figure onto a clean towel, smiling faintly as her fingers brushed the tuffs of jet black hair. Only when she was finished did the woman turn to face her family, "Your right," She whispered, barely audible even to the vampire ears. "I will not rip a child away from her parents if they come." Her eyes fell and she rubbed her arm absentmindedly, a habit they knew she only practiced to still seem human. She sighed and this time her eyes wandered back to the child with barely suppressed want.
"I wouldn't want it to happen to me."
I had barely awoken when a completely different vampire dashed into the room, a gigantic piece of metal thrown haphazardly over one shoulder. The conversation did not stop entirely; as I'm sure it would have if she was a stranger, though a few sets of eyes looked confused as they took in the fact that she was alone. I wonder if they were used to her having a companion.
Ignoring the surprise she caused, the pixyish vampire smiled widely at the sight of me wrapped in blankets on the one called Rose's lap. She squealed happily as the metal fell to the floor with a dull 'thud', wasting no time in dashing over for a closer view. I blinked in surprise as her pretty face was magnified within seconds. What is this? I thought towards Edward, sitting next to a girl child and the brown haired female from earlier, There are more of you?
"She's adorable!" The small woman chirped, sweeping me out of Rosalie's arm before I could even protest. "I couldn't believe it when Edward called and told me what happened," She told them all with a little laugh, still embracing me in a gentle hug, "Poor thing, naked and filthy in the woods." She shook her head sadly and pulled out what looked to be a tiny silk dress, smiling widely as she held it up where I could see it. "That's why I brought this!"
"Alice," Edward cautioned simply as he rose and approached us, "She's not a mindless doll, explain what you mean to do before you do it." He turned to me with a weary smile. "And yes, there are more of us.
"It's not a big deal, just a dress I picked it up at Bella's house." Alice countered simply as she began to shimmy me into the material. Her family all sprouted knowing smirks when she ignored Edward's words pointedly, but the little pixie took next to no notice. I wondered briefly if this was what they considered normal for her and almost smiled when Edward nodded wearily. "That's where we went when Jasper couldn't take the smell anymore." She explained brightly; though at the mention what had to be another vampire, Alice's bright smile shrunk into a worried frown.
"Where is Jasper?" Edward asked; worry creasing his face as well. "Is he still afraid the blood will overwhelm him?"
Alice nodded and sighed, tapping her head with a 'he never listens' expression on her face. "I told him nothing would happen," She said with a frustrated pout, "He just told me to go and said he would 'wait it out.'" She accompanied her speech with an eye roll and strange opening and closing motions with her fingers.
"He's still new to our lifestyle Alice," Carlisle soothed, coming up behind the smaller girl and placing a hand on her shoulder. "Give him time and he will learn to resist." He smiled as she nodded sullenly, giving him the opportunity to rescue me from her arms and push her gently towards the door. "Go get him and tell him it's safe now, Rose cleaned her earlier so there should be nothing for him to worry about."
Alice sighed and nodded, giving their blond leader a grateful smile before dashing out the door. She shouted a: "Be right back!" over her shoulder and was gone.
Suddenly a loud crash echoed from behind us and effectively shattered the silence that had been building around the vampires' brief conversation. As if of one mind, all who were standing turned to see the one who had been holding me earlier, Rose, closely inspecting the metal thing that Alice had dropped in the center of the floor. It was badly dented and crushed, but she seemed determined to turn it back to its old form with several well placed hits and loud crashes.
"Is that what I think it is?" Edward's woman asked with amazement as she peered closely at the mangled mass of metal. "What happened to it? It looks like it was hit with a bus!"
What is it? I mentally asked Edward the mind reader, curiosity beginning to rage through me. What was the thing originally that had this vampire so amazed? Once I had heard mother speak of large weapons that humans had built to be indestructible, moving things that she had called tanks. Could this be one of those?
Edward laughed at my assumption and shook his head with amusement, "No it's nothing like that," He assured me, chuckling a little more as he read my disappointment. "Just a crib, or at least what used to be a crib."
Before I could ask him exactly what a crib was, a dark skinned man stepped forward and rubbed his head sheepishly. He was so obviously not a vampire that I couldn't help but compare him to the beasts I had seen earlier. My eyes widening with wonder as on closer observation I saw several more figures similar to his waiting patiently the background, each one with the same animalistic hearts I had heard from the forest. Interesting.
Edward still standing close enough to Carlisle for me to see his face, rose an eyebrow in what had to be a response to my thoughts. If he was going to clarify on what he found so intriguing however, he didn't have a chance before the dark man spoke.
"Well about that Bella. . ." He began with a hesitant smile, "I uh. . . sort of smashed it with Nessie as a um. . . celebration for her not needing it anymore." He gave another sheepish smile and backed away quickly from where the one he had called Bella silently stood, agape and fuming.
"YOU DID WHAT?"