Sorry this has taken a bit to get out. Real life has just been horrible, and I know it's not really an excuse. You can all be assured that this story WILL be finished, but it might take a while. Thank you for all the reviews, alerts, and favorites. You all are the best! This wasn't the easiest chapter to write, and I will admit that I had to try it a few times before I got something that I felt even half-way comfortable posting, but I hope you all enjoy the chapter, and the new twist I added! (:
I own nothing! Enjoy.
Having the confrontation with everyone about Zarah was pissing me off. How dare they try and tell my sister and her coven that they couldn't stay here! This was Peter's house, and if he said that he was fine with them all staying, then everyone else should just get on board, and not try and say shit like that! I'm sick of Carlisle's attitude when it comes to Edward and Alice. Thank God Edward is dead, or I'm afraid that Carlisle would have run back to him with his tail between his leg. It's like Edward and Alice could never do any wrong, and Carlisle was neglecting his other family members because of them.
I turn towards Peter and Jasper, using my head I nodded outside, hoping to talk to them both about some things. I knew that we had too many vampires here and they would hear us, so I was hoping that they'd take me on a walk, away from everyone and we could talk.
Peter smiled and nodded, and we all made our way outside. He started to open his mouth, but I shook my head and motioned for them to keep walking. When we got far enough away and gave a soft sigh of relief.
"Thanks guys. I just needed to get away for a few minutes, and talk to you guys about something." I told them, plopping down on the ground.
I saw them throw each other a glance before they sat down with me. "What's on your mind Darlin'?" Peter asked, grabbing my hand gently.
"It's Carlisle. While I know he's sincere about being here, and wanting to help. I didn't like the way he was immediately willing to condemn Zarah and her coven. He refuses to believe her about what Edward and Alice have done, and it's got me thinking that maybe he doesn't believe me about what they did to me either." I said softly, refusing to look either of them in the eye.
I heard a sharp intake of breath, and felt a cold hand on my face bringing me to look at Jasper. "Isabella Marie Swan! How could you think that? You know he was heartbroken about what happened to you!" Jasper asked in shock.
I huffed, "Jasper, tell me honestly, he doesn't like my sister or her coven, and while he appeared heartbroken, are you absolutely sure that was what he was feeling?" I asked, needing to know the answer.
He furrowed his brow and sighed softly, "You're right. He doesn't care for Zarah or anyone in her coven. He finds them repulsive, and inhumane. And yes, he did feel heartbroken when he found out what happened to you, but at the same time he was unsure." He hung his head in shame.
"It's not your fault Jasper, you can't help what he feels, but I'm beginning to think that I don't want him around me alone anymore. I know he's been brainwashed like everyone else, but I just don't think I could trust him anymore. I mean for God's sake, Zarah is my sister and he wanted to throw her out because she didn't conform to his dietary standards." I scowled. I knew that Carlisle had problems with those that drank human blood, but I couldn't understand his insistence that animal blood was better. From everything I've witnessed myself, animal drinkers are more prone to slip-ups and control issues than those that drink from humans. I know being a human myself that I should be wary of those that feed on humans, but I couldn't fault them for their food source.
"You will never be alone with Carlisle as long as I'm around Baby." Peter vowed with a deep scowl on his face. I wrapped my arms around his waist, laying my head on his chest and sighing softly.
Jasper was deep in thought, and I was wondering what he was thinking about. "What's going through your head Jas?" I asked softly, still curled up against Peter.
He sighed softly, "Nothing much, just trying to think back to when you were hanging out with the family, and all the emotions that we felt while you were around. Emmett and Rose always felt love and happiness, but at the same time, I could tell they were angry and frustrated about something, but weren't telling me or anyone else what was going on. Edward, Alice, and Esme were all feeling like they were having problems being around you, but never truly felt anything of substance. Carlisle was the one that I'm having a problem remembering. It's like he would cut his emotions off completely when you were around. I'm not getting anything from my memories of you around back then. And now, it's like he's covering something up. While he was being truthful about being brainwashed, I think there is more to his story than what he's told us. Maybe it would be best to have Aro read him and see what he can tell us." He said, turning towards us with a thoughtful look.
I turned towards the mountains around our property and sighed softly. Part of me was hoping that what Carlisle told us was the truth, but a bigger part of me felt as if he left out a huge part of what he told us. Something that dealt more with what Alice, Edward, and Esme have done in the past. I had the sinking suspicion that he knew what they did to my sister, and that's why he wanted my sister and her coven out of the house, because he more than likely had a hand in it. I hope I wasn't right, but I always trusted my instincts, and they were screaming at me about whatever Carlisle was hiding, and I would be damned before I let any of the Cullen's mess with me or my family again.
Hearing Carlisle adamantly protest against Zarah and her coven staying was raising a red flag in everyone's mind. It was like he was hiding something, and the way that Isabella, Peter, and Jasper left set me more on edge. That young lady has been hurt more than anyone, and the way that Carlisle was treating her sister wasn't something that he should have been doing. He should have been happy about Isabella finding out she had a sister out there, and he should have been angry at Edward and Alice for taking away her human life for their own personal pleasure. I knew that Isabella would want me to read his memories, and I would gladly have Jane or Alec use their gifts on him to be able to read him if he resisted.
I turned towards the front door as I heard Isabella's heartbeat walking back towards the house, waiting on her to come inside. It was like everyone was anticipating her arrival in the house; everyone was turned towards the door with the exception of Carlisle. I looked towards Marcus, who was standing off to my right and raised an eyebrow at him, silently asking him about Carlisle's lines, and Marcus lightly touched my hand, giving me his glimpse at the lines Carlisle had, and what I saw shocked me. He had no lines to anyone in this house, and I knew immediately that he wouldn't be allowed to live much longer. It was like he was sent to spy on us from Esme or Alice. Although he hasn't been alone since he got here, I'm trying to figure out how he would spy on us without alerting the other two of his coven what was going on. We'd all been together while hunting, but there could have been a time when he was alone enough to send them a text. If that was the case, then our plans of deceiving Alice were no longer valid, and we'd have to come up with another ploy.
As soon as I thought that, Carlisle turned towards me, and the look in his eyes was one of utter contempt, that I'm sure he didn't want me to see, because he immediately covered it with a different emotion that I couldn't name. I turned towards Alec and gave him a slight nod of my head, telling him that I wanted him to cut Carlisle's senses off, I was going to get to the bottom of this fiasco one way or another, and I realized that it would have to be done like this. I hated that it had to come to this, but I wasn't going to let anyone hurt Isabella any longer, and the quicker that we got this finished, the quicker that Isabella and her family would be able to finally live in peace. She may have been Caius' however many great's niece, but I felt as if she was my family as well, and I wouldn't let anyone hurt her any longer.
As soon as Alec told me that his senses were cut off, I walked over to Carlisle and touched him with one finger, getting every memory that he's ever had, and to say I was shocked was an understatement. He was in on the whole thing in regards to Isabella, and what went on in Forks. Carlisle is the one that had the order to have her father killed, and told Alice that it would bring Isabella into the open, but he wasn't counting on her having new friends and family standing behind her. That's why he was made to come here, to try and get close to her, and take her out that way, even if it ended up him getting killed himself. He was a sacrificial lamb in this game, and neither Esme or Alice gave a damn about him.
I removed my finger from him, sighing softly and turned towards the door where Isabella had walked through moments ago. The look on my face must have said it all because I heard just about every vampire in the room growl, but I was most worried about Isabella. She had the most heartbroken look on her face, and her shoulders slumped. Peter walked up behind her and wrapped her in his arms. She looked me dead in the eyes and asked the one question everyone was wondering.
"Why is he here if he doesn't care?" She asked, leaning back into Peter's chest. Everyone turned towards me, waiting on the answer.
I sighed softly, not wanting to answer, but I knew that I would have to. "He was in on it all. The only reason he is here is because they were thinking that with the death of your father, that you'd be more out in the open and they could get to you that way, and when it didn't happen, they sent him here to get you alone and kill you, no matter if it cost him his life as well. They don't care about anything except your death." I told her straight, knowing that if I didn't that it would be worse for everyone involved.
I saw the color drain from Isabella's face, and her eyes darken, "Are you telling me that he was the reason my father was killed, and he's here because he is supposed to kill me?" She asked without any emotion in her voice. I nodded my head, waiting on the blow up she was more than likely going to have. I saw Jasper wince slightly, but he covered it up quickly. "Was he aware of Zarah, and what she was to me?" She wanted to know.
"From what I can tell, he wasn't aware of what she was to you, but he did know about what Edward and Alice did to her, and he agreed, because she's silent to both Edward and Alice's gifts, same as you were. They thought that if they had her on their side, that they would be able to counter your gifts." I told her, turning away from her in shame. I should have read him when he got here instead of letting it go till now, or I should have known that Carlisle was part of it all when I read Edward before killing him. I didn't even hear her moving until I felt her arms around my waist.
"It's alright Aro, I know you feel like it's partially your fault, but you didn't know about what they were up to. Even though you read Edward, you couldn't have possibly known that Carlisle was in on it all, and you never would have known that Carlisle had any part in my father's death. None of this is your fault, and I won't have my family blaming themselves for things that weren't in their control." She told me, as if she had been reading my mind. I wrapped her in my arms, breathing in her calming scent and sighed softly.
"You're right Cara, but I'm still upset because I should have known something more was going on than what I read from Edward, and I should have read Carlisle when he got here instead of just believing him right from the start." Before I knew it, I felt a smack to the back of my head and turned to see Jasper behind me with a scowl and his arms now crossed over his chest.
I blinked at him, wondering why the hell he smacked me, "I smacked you because you forget what I can do. I am an Empath, and yet he was able to fool me as well. While you could read every memory a person has had, I should have known something was wrong with his emotions, and yet he was able to fool me. This isn't your fault, and it's not my fault, it's all on Alice, Esme, Edward, and Carlisle." He said, ending in a soft voice.
I looked around at all those gathered around us in the room, and saw them all nodding at me. Looking down at Isabella still in my arms, she looked up and nodded as well. "He's right Aro, this isn't your fault, it's no one's fault here. It's all on them, so please let this go." She told me, squeezing me around the waist, hoping that I would believe her.
I looked all around us, and saw that everyone was in agreement with Isabella and Jasper, and I realized at that moment that no matter what Carlisle or the others had done, we'd always be able to come together and be a family.
After hearing what Aro said about Carlisle, I wanted to rip the mother fucker apart. There wasn't any way I was going to let him anywhere near my girl just for him to kill her. Knowing that he was in on it all just made me even angrier. Not once had we ever assumed that compassionate Carlisle Cullen would be in on something so sinister as to kill a human for anything. We all thought that he was the advocate for human life, and yet here he was wanting to kill one.
"If he was aware of it all, and was in on the whole thing, how was Edward able to hide it from you?" I asked Aro, more than likely voicing the thoughts that everyone was thinking.
They all turned to look at him, but he shrugged his shoulders, "I'm not certain how they were able to hide that detail from me, unless it's part of Esme's gift." Everyone could tell that he was angry at himself for not being able to know the things that were going on.
I walked towards him, "Don't feel bad about it all again, we've all told you that it wasn't your fault, that it was their fault. You just said it yourself that it was more than likely Esme's gift that prevented you from knowing about it through Edward's mind, and we're all going to stick with that. Now that we know the truth, we can go from there. Did you see if he was ever alone to contact Alice or Esme?" I asked, hoping and praying that he wouldn't have ever had the chance.
Aro shook his head, "He was never really alone long enough to call anyone or text them without anyone else seeing or hearing what he was doing. So we're safe in that aspect, but I did see that Alice told him before he left that she had an even bigger army than what we've been made aware of." He sighed softly. "We're going to have to work harder to defeat this army, even with all our allies we have here, we're going to need more, and a better defense against them."
I nodded, and began thinking about what he just told me. I turned towards Jasper and gave a slight nod towards him, letting him know that we're going to have to do things kind of like we did in the Southern Armies. He nodded back, and I could see his back straighten, and the feared Major start to come to the surface. I knew he wouldn't let anything happen to Bella, or anyone else around here, and I was thankful that he was on my side. I wouldn't want to face my own brother on the battlefield, and I sure as hell was glad that I had him helping to protect my mate. I knew this was going to be a hard battle, and that we'd more than likely lose people on our side, but as long as it wasn't that many or anyone that was in our family, I wasn't going to let it bother me. I just hope that we have time enough to prepare and get all our allies here that we're going to need.
I'm sorry for such a long time between chapters, life is crazy, and my muse just keeps leaving me when it comes to writing lately. Just know that I'll NEVER abandon my story, and that it will get finished, it just might take me a while to finish it. I hope you all enjoy it, and bear with me while I try and finish it.