Disclaimer: I do not own Twilight or the characters associated within it. Only the plot, OC's, and reimagined history/species of Bella are of my own creation.
Warning: Later chapters will feature gruesome violence and depictions of harm. Dark subject matter will also be present. Bella's not had a pleasant last few years.
If you had a choice between misery and peace, would you pick the peace knowing it'd be your death?
If you made yourself cling to a life of pain and heavy judgement because it was expected of you, after living a life of obedience and expected leadership, could you honestly say you'd be willing to die?
Would you give in? End the existence that is a bane to others, just to take the easy way out? Because it was the duty of others to revile you?
Yet I wouldn't.
I'd wonder how it got to this point, but that would be a waste. I know perfectly well why I'm here, running. Why I'm desperately trying to prolong the inevitable. Am I such a coward for delaying my fate? Perhaps. Others think so. All I know is that I need to get as far away as I can before they catch me. My life, my very freedom, depends on it. Though that all lies heavily on the stipulation that I can actually outrun them.
I never have.
The mocking snarls behind me push my feet to go faster. Padded feet claw and tear up the ground as they race leisurely along, content to let my feeble legs falter and trip. The steady rainfall and dense fog aren't helping, either. I can barely see what's in front of me, enhanced sight or no. It's their favourite game to play: hunt and hound the freak. Push it to it's limits before playing with the leftovers. Oh, they love to bash and thrash around the beloved plaything. Who is this poor, unfortunate soul subject to this barbaric form of entertainment you ask? Why, me, of course.
The one who is different from them all, and because of it, hated.
Being different shouldn't have been all that bad in this day and age, but from where I'm from, it meant everything. Outcast. Stranger. Demon. The moment it was made clear that I am not normal was the moment I became less than nothing. Born to leadership and great things, I had been groomed to take over the tribe and rule for many fruitful years. Funny how fate changes things.
A sudden heavy weight on my back sends me hurtling to the ground, my face painfully digging into the hard ground. Fuck! Already? I struggle to breathe, to lift my head and gasp for air but the burden holding me down prevents it. Asphyxiation rises as a real threat before sharp claws turned cruel, human hands throw me into a nearby tree. The impact breaks a few of my ribs, tearing a scream from my throat. Harsh laughs meet my cries and I open my eyes to the sight of the two sent to kickstart the Bella-Bash Fest. It always starts with just two to begin the hunt before the others move in for their own pleasure.
Boris, the one who had caught and threw me, bends down and clasps my throat in his hand. He picks me up and slams me like a ragdoll into the tree again, forcing another cry of pain. The other one, Ivan, snickers from behind Boris and steps forward to bare his canines at me. To think that these two used to be my closest friends still rankles deep in my chest. Despite how I know that it is my own fault for this immense hatred, that this is their right, the betrayal still stings. Eighteen years of happy friendship and all bonds of love were broken and tossed to the winds the moment I Morphed.
Life's a bitch.
Electricity shooting through my system shatters my thoughts. My scream chokes off in my throat, the muscles locking together. Boris continues pouring his current into me, his expression gleeful under the torture. I can only attempt to gasp for air as I stare into his cold, pitiless eyes. What a bastard. It goes on for a few minutes before he throws me quite forcefully towards the direction I was running in earlier, creating an indention when I land. My arm blocks my fall and dislocates my shoulder instantly. Oh, God-! Pain ripples through my body, intensified by the previous system shock. I make my limbs move despite their stiff and clamped state, forcing myself to continue fleeing. Ivan has to catch me now, and I want to put as much distance between us before he carries on the hunt. Laughter turns to vicious snarls as the two morph and give chase once more.
Work, damn it! Run! My legs keep fumbling and floundering for purchase, all motor functions screwed. I have not run this far just to fail and die now. Determined, I finally manage to run again in spite of the searing pain everywhere. Without having to check I know my voice is temporarily useless - it will take a few hours for my body to repair the vocal cords. Provided I live that long, I scoff to myself. A break in the trees appears up ahead and I panic, thinking I've come to a cliff; I scramble to slow down but my reactions are still shot to hell. Shit! This isn't good. Barrelling forward, I git my teeth and prepare to go falling to my death. Shitshitshitsh- Oh.
A nervous laugh spills from my mouth as I discover my fear was unfounded. In front of me is a broad clearing with a large white house on the other side, the forest extending all around it. The sight is so unexpected and surprising that I halt - nearly falling over in the process - and gawk, standing like an idiot as the others close the gap. There is a group of people standing on the front porch, facing my direction. What the hell? I rub my eyes vigorously, sure my eyes deceive me. But as I rub and scrape, again and again, the image remains unchanged. People don't live this far out of town...do they? Unfortunately, my distraction gave Ivan and Boris the time they needed to catch up, and I end up flying halfway across the clearing with a considerable gash across my back.
God, it hurts.. So much pain. My throat seizes up with my unvoiced screams, and I begin to convulse and cough out blood. The healing process has started and it feels like I've swallowed a handful of rusty nails. That motherfucker Boris knew this would happen - I can feel it in my gut. He's always had a penchant for immense pain. Darkness begins closing in and I cease writhing. Thinking becomes a chore and all I can focus on is breathing. In. Out. In... Out... Don't think..just breathe..
"Aw, don't go to sleep on us just yet," Ivan's voice coos coldly, the sound jolting me from my brief stupor. My eyelids feel so heavy, but I know I have to raise them and look him in the eye. To do otherwise would only result in more pain. I can't..take anymore.. I force my lids open halfway, gazing up at unyielding black irises inches from my face. Ivan grins maliciously and cups my cheek. "There we go. Can't have the prey sleeping before the main course." His expression is anything but friendly.
I'm pulled to my feet and, when I start to sway, backhanded. The movement heavily bruises my cheek and makes the convulsions come back; it takes all my willpower to keep from spewing blood all over Ivan. He's holding me at arm's length, his grip on my arms crushing. I can feel my bones groaning under the pressure. No.. Boris steps up beside Ivan and taps his chin - thinking up the next torture bout, no doubt. I know I'm right when he smiles inhumanly and swaggers closer, latching a hand over my head. My brain is too fuddled with pain and fatigue to try and fight, but the warning bells sounding off make me whimper. The sound is like a blender filled with rocks in my throat's current state, and Ivan slaps me again. A warning to keep quiet.
Boris squeezes and suddenly my brain feels like it might implode. Eyes bulging, I gape like a fish at Boris but he gives no explanation. I begin to struggle, suddenly realizing his intent, but Ivan holds me steadfast. Tears pool in my eyes with sudden hopelessness. Please, don't. Please.. A whispered prayer in the recesses of my mind are the last words spoken before Boris begins to electrify my brain. The pain is so gargantuan, so unbearable, that for a split second I watch the scene from outside my body. The expression on my face is one of pure agony, while Ivan and Boris couldn't be happier. If my throat wasn't already bleeding and raw, it would have been from the amount of screams that are just dying to be released. For what lasted just a moment feels like an eternity: floating and watching, detached. Too soon, and yet not soon enough, it ends. I'm thrust back inside myself and the remnants of the pain are the last straw on my body.
As Ivan hurls me towards the house, the darkness from before quickly resumes it's assault on my conciousness. I barely feel the breaking of the wood of the porch as I crash into it, my mind too far gone to fully register the new pain. Snarls, hisses and growls are the symphony to which I fall into blissful oblivion; the beautiful face of an angel with spiky black hair the last sight I see.
The recesses of my mind are dark and clouded. No matter how hard I try to push through, the fog only thickens and the memories I seek flitter farther and farther away. Despair rises and crests. No. No, no, no, no, no! This isn't happening! This just can't be happening... Everything is suffocating. I can't see anything, can't hear anything. There's nothing. Nothing.
Wailing with no relief. Anguish without tears to cry. A feeling of acute emptiness where there should be fulfillment.
Consciousness is elusive. Trapped within, I can only hold myself and pray I'll make it out with my sanity.
Voices slowly filter into the gloom where I am caged. They are musical and soothing, even in the heat of anger as some are. One is calm and authoritative. Another is warm and loving - motherly. A third is harsh and bitter, followed by a sharp fourth. The next is uneasy and slightly accented with southerly drawl, and the last is..heavenly. Soothing, like a balm to my battered soul. I breathe in deep and relax my mental stiffness with the effect the voice brings. It gives me the strength to single it out from the rest, to lie still and listen to the easy, peaceful cadence.
Several more minutes pass and the volume steadily rises. It's beginning to sound as if they're screaming right in my ear. Harsh and bitter is now speaking with an increasing hostility, and the air starts to vibrate with growls. The sound is so familiar that it jolts me, and next thing I know I'm sitting up with my eyes wide open. Gasping for breath, I immediately clutch my screaming ribs and roll on my side to heave and cough up blood into the waiting waste basket beside the bed. Fuck, I must not have healed properly. My right arm throbs with pain, and I look down at it to see that it's in a sling. Examining closer, it becomes obvious that my shoulder is still dislocated. Odd. That should have been more healed by now. My back starts burning, as well, and now I can feel the thick bandages wrapped completely around my midsection and back.I note that the room had become eerily quiet during my upheaval and examination - absent even of breathing. Either everyone's great at holding their breath, or they're not entirely human. The lack of a heartbeat signified the latter, and as I finally look up, I see that I was right.
Standing all around me in the unfamiliar bed I am in are seven vampires with strange golden eyes. They all meet my gaze with steady looks of their own, some rigid and others guarded; only one is completely at ease. Silence reigns and I take this opportunity to observe them. On the far left is what looks to be the oldest, with golden slicked-back hair. His features are fair with compassionate eyes, and I immediately know he would not harm me without damned good reason. Standing next to him is the eldest woman, with a heart-shaped face and a loving aura around her. She is smiling warmly at me, golden eyes twinkling. From this, I know she also would never harm me - violence is not in her nature. Beside her is a giant of a man holding onto the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. They are fairly aged, but a mix of contrasts. Whereas he is large and grinning goofily, she is small and curvaceous, glaring daggers as if I was about to claw out her perfect blonde hair. Next is a fairly tall man, but lean, with crazy hair that sticks out everywhere. His jaw is greatly chiseled and he's pressing his lips together, a scowl marring his features. Another decently sized man is next, but he is more lean than the other with short blonde hair that is slightly wavy. His expression is curious but guarded. Last is the youngest of the three women and my breath catches as I lay eyes upon her.
A tingle goes down my spine as I take in her beautiful spiked hair and cheerful disposition. She looks to be as if she's holding in a giggle, and as my gaze lingers on her for far too long, I see that I'm right. The laughter that spills from her lips is even more heavenly than that voice of pure happiness I heard earlier. She continues giggling at my gawking self and then dances closer to the bed, impossibly graceful, and extends her hand. "Hi! My name's Alice. What's yours?"
I blink, taking a few seconds to comprehend that she is the owner of rapture personsified, that voice of an angel. Swallowing, I hesitantly raise my own battered hand on my good arm and barely place it in hers. Her skin is a littler cooler than mine, a fact that makes her frown in confusion before it is swiftly replaced with a dazzling grin. I blink again, completely lost to her charm. Consider me dazzled, alright. "I'm..Bella," I finally reply, wincing at the shooting pain ricocheting through my throat and chest. And the fact that it grated worse than nails on a chalkboard. Alice immediately frowns and places her cool hand on my burning throat. She looks chagrined and sorrowful as she takes in my relieved sigh.
"I'm so sorry!" she exclaims, running her free hand sheepishly through her hair, barely ruffling it. "I completely forgot your throat was so damaged. How are you feeling? Oh! Wait, don't speak again!" In a blur she leaves the room and quickly returns with a pen and notebook, handing them to me enthusiastically with the pen placed gently in my bad arm. I stare down at them dumbly, holding them unfamiliarly in my hands. Anger irrationally surges through me before I realize that she doesn't know. An ache replaces the anger, the pain an old feeling. I take a deep breath before looking back at Alice. Her head is tilted to side with a puzzled expression on her face, not realizing why I haven't started writing yet.
"Don't know..how," I rasp out, quickly looking away from the horrified and sympathetic look on her face. I don't need your pity. Sadly, that last sentence upsets my throat and I end up coughing up more blood - I duck and roll back to the waste basket, disgusted. It feels worse than having your throat clogged with thick mucus, and the twinge of pain in my shoulder, ribs, and back adds to the discomfort. As my bout subsides, a cool hand returns to my throat. I turn to see Alice kneeling beside me, rubbing soothing circles on my aggravated throat. Clenching my teeth, I jerk away and face the others again. Really don't need your fucking pity. Glowering blondie and scowling gravity-hair boy look like they're about to smash something. I raise an eyebrow, calmly awaiting the explosion. It ought to be entertaining.
Blondie is the first to break, stepping forward with a snarl on her face. "Enough, Alice! Just what the hell do you think you're doing?" she growls, turning to growl at me when she finishes. Alice turns her own frown upon the other, displeased.
"Helping someone in need, Rosalie. If you have a problem with that, you're welcome to leave the room," she replies, a hard edge to her beautiful voice. Something tells me the two disagree on alot of things. Blondie, now known as Rosalie, stares long and hard at Alice, a dangerous twitch to her eye. She grabs the giant man next to her and storms out, slamming the door behind her. I would be chuckling, but my the less-than-desirable state of my throat prevents it. Gravity-hair boy stands even more rigid than he was before, his scowl on full power and directed at me. Ooo, maybe he'll go next.
When he speaks, his voice is demanding in a tone that makes my skin crawl with the implied meaning behind it. "Alice!" he barks, displeasure blatant. My eyes narrow dangerously at him, not liking how he is speaking at her. He notices my narrowed eyes and steps forward with deadly intent. I merely raise my chin defiantly, goading him to go through with it. Go ahead, pretty boy. I dare you to take that last step. Alice surprises me by stepping between us, hands on her hips.
"Edward! Stop that this instant. Last I could recall, you were not the head of the household nor the boss of me. If you can't be civil, you're welcome to follow Rose!" She waves her hand at him then the door in emphasis, inflection beautifully hard. Edward grinds his jaw and then stalks out with such arrogance in his stance it makes me want to gag. I'd love to deflate that obviously large ego. Alice twirls back to my side and returns her hand to my throat. Normally her temperature wouldn't have much affect on me, but because my throat is inflamed the coolness of her hand is greater than my low body heat. Thank god for that, too.
Mr. Compassionate from the far left clears his throat and steps forward, breaking the moment. "Bella, is it?" he asks, a small smile on his face. I nod, looking back at Alice. She's grinning again, obviously happy to be helping my woeful self. "I am Carlisle, it's a pleasure to meet you," he continues, extending his hand politely. I lightly shake it, nodding to show I return the sentiment. Miss Motherly steps forward next to shake my hand as well, announcing her name as Esme. She and Carlisle are the heads of the house, she tells me, acting as parents to the rest of the vampires. They are vegetarians, feeding only on animals. At least they have morals.
The pleasantries are cut short when I start coughing uncontrollably, even under Alice's alleviating touch. My other injuries jerk painfully from the spasms my cough induce. Son of a bitch! Just hurry up already! Alice says something hurriedly and Carlisle steps forward, concern written on his face. He gestures something but she replies sharply, and to my surprise steps closer to me. I can't make out what they're saying through the haze clouding my mind, induced both from pain and fatigue. A particularly violent cough rips through me and I'm sure my throat is about to tear open. Alice, bless her, had the waste basket waiting just as the largest spew of blood flew from my throat and ran like vomit. I heaved and heaved, the pain escalating unbearably until I felt like I was surely dying -
"Carlisle!" Alice cries just as I spit out the last and inhale a sweet, sweet breath free of pain. I gasp for several seconds until I calm, sighing deeply to allow the last vestiges of the healing to clear away. By the time I finish, the curious blonde vampire had left and only Esme, Carlisle and Alice are in the room, looking at me like I've grown another head. I smile sweetly and stand up gently, observing with great giddiness how Carlilse's eyebrows raise as he sees we are the same height. Alice bounces over and takes my hand again, worried. "Are you alright? Does it still hurt?"
I laugh at her eager questions. Such an energetic little thing, isn't she? She looks startled that my laugh comes unhindered and easy, like water in a river. "Yes, Alice. I'm quite alright for now," I chuckle, elated that my voice no longer sounds so awful. Esme and Carlisle step closer and draw Alice between them, away from me. Distrust? Or simply practicality? Either way, I can't say I blame them. I stand patiently and wait for either to address me. Really, they have no idea what I am judging by the wary looks they're directing my way, and until they know I'm not a danger to them, they're going to keep a close watch. I'd do the same thing if our positions were reversed. To lessen my threat, I sit back down on the bed and fold my legs under me. Carlisle and Esme relax slightly; Alice just rolls her eyes at their behavior.
"Judging by how cool your body temperature is and the fact that you possess accelerated healing abilities, I think it's safe to say that you're not exactly human," Carlisle begins, face unreadable. All previous consideration is gone and now replaced with an air of inquisitiveness slash hostility. The hostility is a minor feeling, not anything to be worried about, but it's still there. "We initially did not perceive you as a threat from how injured you were, but now after observing your body heal itself, the time for questions has come. You know we are vampires, but we do not know what you are. Never in all my years have I encountered anything like you. Would you mind enlightening us?"
Shifting around to get more comfortable, I nod in acquiescence. "It's..a bit complicated," I mutter, scratching my neck idly. It's not as if I'll get in trouble for this, anyway - either the tribe will kill them or the vampires will make a deal to save their hides. Whichever happens, I'm screwed anyway so might as well. "Well, um, you know how shifters are humans that can shapeshift into some sort of animal?" They all nod, thinking I'm about to tell them I'm some sort of shifter. Wonder how they'll react to the truth. "It's like what I do and am, but not the same. The mechanics are, but everything else is different." Confusion replaces assumed knowledge, so I quickly continue, "I'm not a human who becomes an animal, I'm an animal that becomes human." I grin sheepishly, providing a good look at my formidable teeth. Stunned silence greets my confession - all three are blinking blankly at me, eyes zeroed in on my mouth. Cat's out of the bag now... Almost quite literally.
Alice squeals excitedly and starts bouncing around. "Really? That's so cool!" she bursts out, golden eyes sparkling with irrepressible enthusiasm. I'm tempted to reach out and feel if she's actually vibrating with all her exuberance, but I reign in the impulse and my fingers just twitch. Is she always like this? Esme places a restraining hand on the tiny vampire's shoulder, making Alice still but she keeps the radiant smile on her face. Carlisle clears and redirects the attention back to the bombshell I just dropped.
"Animal? That's..impossible," he murmurs, eyes full of curiosity. I raise an eyebrow, slightly insulted. He quickly backtracks. "Not that I don't believe you," the hasty words spill, apologetic. "It's just that it's technically not possible. Forgive me, I have been a doctor for a few centuries now and so sometimes my thinking is limited. So you're saying this isn't your true form?"
"Yes and no. What you see right now is like..an extension of my inner self. While at heart I am a beast and predator, there is also a part of me that is not entirely animalistic. Thousands of years ago, the ancestors of my kind discovered they could harness this and use it to walk amongst humans. Their animal side was more prominent, however, so it was rather difficult to blend in without suspicion. Over time it has become easier, our predatory instincts more easily trained and harnessed, as well as some side effects such as body heat that either lowered or increased - depending on the climate - as the years went by. Our ancestors were beasts of legend with enormous power that was unequaled and a high intelligence that was unrivalved. I expect the reason you've never heard of us before now is because we've lived in remote areas to avoid much interaction with humans and supernaturals. We don't consider ourselves as supernatural beings because of our history and traditions.
"As a species, we can be very close minded and are very traditional creatures. My tribe has lived in Siberia, mostly in the tundra areas, since the day The Great Ones Morphed for the first time. The other tribes range all over the world, from thick forests to barren deserts. Each tribe differs from the next because of the different environments and prey. For example, because I hail from a terribly cold climate I am better adjusted to cooler temperatures, large gaps in meals, and running on unforgiving land. Because we are predators and beasts foremost, we adapt to our surroundings accordingly and adjust our eating habits. Should we move, that is - it's a very rare occurrence. Colours also vary, but from your bewildered expressions I can see I've yet to tell you just what I am. My tribe are white Siberian tigers, taking after the form of the regular Siberian tigers with a variation that distinguishes us from normal animals. Other tribes are tigers as well, but the species they resemble is different than ours or any other. Any questions?"
Carlisle was wide-eyed, but only wasted a brief second before launching, "Tell me more about this extension thing. Are you saying that you picked this form for your human self?"
"No, I didn't," I corrected, amused. "Because it's an extension of my inner self, it is a reflection of my character and personality. It actually changes over the course of childhood and adolescence, changing as the person does. In fact, if an adult were to change their human appearance would as well. As for what humans call us, there are many different variations, but the most common is tigri spettrali - or, in English, Spectral Tigers. The Volturi were the first to name us, for we have no name for ourselves though sometimes we refer to ourselves jokingly as Werecats. I will admit that our ancestors threatened the Volturi to not reveal our existence. Make no mistake, we are incredibly dangerous and a lot harder to kill than any Child of the Moon. Or werewolf, as you're familiar with."
"What about the birthing and pregnancy processes?"
"Well, we can get pregnant in either form, but to give birth we have to be as our human selves. Children stay as human until they turn eighteen, at which time they will Morph and be inducted into the tribe as a full adult. In the interim, they are trained how to hunt and forage for themselves, how to survive. Lessons on how to handle the beastly side to our natures are started as soon as puberty hits so that they are not entirely helpless when the Morph comes. Back in the days of our ancestors, it was the other way around: birthing and pregnancy as the beast, and learning to harnass the human side with intense meditation and determination. It was considered a high honour to gain the skill, and over time I guess we just evolved."
Esme presents the next question. "I notice you keep saying morph. Is that different from shapeshifting?"
"Essentially, yes. Since we're not changing into something alien to ourselves, it is basically just a transformation. The first time it happens it is Morphing with a capital 'M'. Everytime after that is with a lowercase 'M', because the the first time is really special. The tribe takes you on a hunt with your beastly self immediately to get you in tune with it, and the kill is eaten in a great and joyous feast."
Alice begins bouncing again. "You said you guys sometimes call yourselves Werecats. What are the differences?"
"Aside from the fact that we are not, in fact, human first and animal second?" I laugh as she has the grace to look sheepish. "For one thing, we do not need a moon to transform to our normal selves, nor do we need it to be 'human.' We are bigger, deadlier, and far more intelligent than any cat I've ever seen. As for how we compare to a Werecat, I can't say - I've never met one before."
"If your tribe is from Siberia, what are you doing all the way over here in the states? In Forks, no less?" Carlisle questions next, thoroughly puzzled. My face, previously lit with an inner joy and happiness, deflates immediately and my mood nosedives. Fuck. I was really starting to enjoy their company. Oh well, it was bound to come up anyway. Carlisle looks sheepish as he opens his mouth to apologize, but I hold up my hand to silence him.
"It's alright, Carlisle," I say, voice flat. "The reason has to do with me. I'm essentially an outcast in my tribe, and these last two years they've taken to hunting me around the world instead of just around Siberia."
All three of the vampires frown and exchange looks, suddenly putting two and two together. It's Alice, however, that sits beside me on the bed and takes my hand. "Was that what was happening when you stumbled onto our house?" she queries, angelic voice soft and sorrowful. The sound is almost heartbreaking. I nod in response and stare at her hair absent mindedly, wondering if she gets it that way or if it's a natural thing. They begin speaking at vampiric speed and low volume, obviously forgetting I'm not human and can simply listen in if I want. However, I feel lazy and kinda tired so I choose to tune them out and just focus on the tiny vampire beside me. Her features are even more beautiful up close, golden eyes like a miniature and much more beautiful sun. I lean into her and lay my head on her shoulder, breathing in her comforting scent. It's alot like nature, now that I think about it. Bright, open, free - it calls to something inside of me and I don't bother suppressing the purr that rumbles from deep within.
They halt their conversation and stare openly at me, but I don't care. My eyes close and I take another deep breath of that wonderful aroma that is Alice. Alice. Beautiful Alice. The purr intensifies and I let myself curl further against her, content to simply rest. After all, I only have a few more minutes at the least before they finally kick me out after once they get it that I'm different. It always happens, no matter where I go - especially other tribes. I learned that the hard way. However, I do deserve it; it's not my right to be free. But for now, I'll let myself take this forbidden succor and hold onto it forever.
Now that Boris has erased every single good memory I've ever had, this is all I'll have left when the vampires return me to my fate.
A/N: Beware this awfully long author's note. This idea sprung out at me after seeing way too much of the movies this month. I got so tired of seeing broody, manipulative and controlling Edward getting all the lovin's, so my mind rebelled and threw this at me. I'd always liked the idea of a not-so-human Bella with a different beginning and meeting with the Cullens. Spectral Tigers in italian seems kinda unoriginal as to what to call Bella's species, but I draw utter blanks when naming things. I swear, it is one of the hardest things to do! Beastly Bella is so much better than human Bella, dontcha think? The idea to have her be beast first and human after came from one of my favourite series by Jane Lindskold. Ever read her? Quite fascinating, her story of Firekeeper and Blind Seer. I've read the first book of that series so many times, my poor paperback is practically destroyed. I did the thing in reverse because it makes absolute sense. Absolute frigging sense! Beasts from thousands of years ago managing to find a piece of themselves that is not entirely..monstrous and developing it into a usable thing - that spawned from Jane Lindskold's concept of Royal Beasts. Royal Beasts are animals that are much larger with an intelligence that far surpasses lesser animals, or Cousins. It just hit me over the head how easy it would be for such beasts to evolve and shape themselves; namely, produce this human-like extension of themselves. Add in years upon years to hone this skill and enough time to evolve and bam, you've got Bella's species. And no, I did not steal the idea from the series - it only helped me identify the similiarities and further my own.
Bella might be considered out of character, but that's because of the different upbringing. As stated earlier within the chapter, Bella was raised to be the leader of her tribe until the day she Morphed and it became known that she was different. At times she will be headstrong and aggressive, drawing on that ideal that was instilled from childhood; others, she will be subdued and fearful, brought on by the years of harsh treatment and prejudice from her tribe. This is Bellice, if you couldn't already tell from the ending of the chapter :P no imprinting will take place. I just don't like the idea of instantaneous love or affection/pull. I might have made it seem that way, but Alice is just that loveable. So cuddly and upbeat - like a happy cloud :3 before I run off at how much I simply adore Alice, I'll get back on track here and say that there is no imprinting because Bella's species is not supernatural. Their mating habits will be explained later on.
Like I just stated, they aren't quite supernatural. It's more like..highly intelligent and dangerous animals with special abilities. Does that make sense? xD; sometimes it's hard to communicate with words what the mind so easily knows. I did leave out a few important things, such as: Bella's differences from others of her species, why they hunt her, explanation of Boris' electrical ability, how long she's been hunted (I don't like her as a teenager so much, hint hint), and a few other things. Can't be going around and throwing all my chips into one pot, now. Anyway, I took this idea as a chance to work on my first person point of view and present tense writing skills. I don't see a lot of things written in present tense, and who knows, I may want to use it for something really important someday. Practice makes better! I'll shut up now and let you carry on; if you've managed to read this far into the note, that is. I hope you enjoyed this first tidbit! I'll have more soon, I promise.