AN: This is a flashback, it's about a year post Bella's graduation. I'm going to do a few flashbacks periodically so we can see what they've been up to the last year and a half lol. Sorry it took so long to update !

I finish patrols and head to Bella's house. I decide to run, since I'm already half way there. I phase in the trees just before Bella's house and pull my shorts on. I'm just about to scale the tree outside her window when I hear a whimpering noise from the front door. Immediately I tense up and I'm on high alert, ready to phase at a moment's notice.

I round the corner of the house with a practiced speed and stealth, and I'm confronted by the image of Bella sitting on her porch her eyes glassy, obviously trying to keep the tears at bay.

"Bella, are you okay?" I look around wildly, taking in our surroundings, trying to ascertain if there is an imminent threat of danger.

She jumps up and put a hand on her chest. "Shit! Jake, you scared me! You should know better than to sneak up on me like that."

I can hear her heart pounding wildly and I feel bad for startling her, but she still hadn't answered my question.

"I'm sorry; I thought you were in trouble. Are you?"

She waves her hand dismissively and I don't miss the telltale shaking. "No, it's nothing like that."

I close the distance between us in a couple long strides, and gather her into my arms.

"What's wrong?"

Her arms wind around my waist immediately, but I sense her hesitation. I pull her closer and rub soothing circles on the exposed skin of her back.

"It's - it's the Cullen's." she finally gets out. The shaky quality of her voice worries me a little.

"What about them? Are they alright?"

If someone had told me a year ago I would actually be concerned about the welfare of bloodsuckers... well let's just say I'd probably still be laughing. But there it was.

Now don't me wrong, Edward and I don't have slumber parties and braid each others hair, in fact we pretty much hate each other just as much as we always have. But the rest of his family, I had to admit were decent. Carlisle was always on hand whenever we needed to keep things discreet, and despite all odds Emmett and I were actually friends. Turns out he was quite the football player back in his human days.

All in all I suppose you could say 'mortal enemies' had been laying it on a little thick.

"No, no, they're fine. They're just leaving Forks."

I realize now, that given that I had just been thinking about our tentative alliance with the Cullens, that my reaction was unfair. But old insecurities came rushing back.

My jaw clenches in an immediate and involuntary response.

She must have felt my body tensing because she pulls back to look at me, a questioning look in her eyes.


"Still? After all this time?"

She's confused and pulls back further. "What are you talking about?"

"You've been broken up with the leech for years and you're still crying because he's skipping town! You're still not over him, are you?" My voice rises higher than I meant it to, but I don't take my words back.

I see the hurt flash in her eyes and she recoils as if I have physically hit her. I shiver in revulsion at the thought.

"How can you say that?" Her words are tinged with the betrayal she feels, but hell, she's not the only one feeling betrayed at the moment. "God and I always thought I was the insecure one."

She's shooting to wound and it works.

"Well what am I supposed to think when I find you crying over the leech?"

Her hands are on her hips and she glares at me menacingly.

"You're supposed to trust me!"

I falter.

"I do trust you."

"You have an awfully strange way of showing it. You know what, you should just leave. I don't want to be around you when you're like this."

My anger is fizzling out, I realize I may have overreacted, but damn it if I'm not stubborn as a mule.


I run into the woods and phase without removing my shorts, a bit of stubborn, stupidity that Billy will make sure I pay for later - literally. A minute later Sam has heard my whole conversation with Bella.

You're an idiot. sounds in my head.

Go away. I mutter immaturely.

I want to hold on to my quickly receding anger for as long as I can. Sam talking sense into me won't help that cause.

Fine, I won't. I'm sure you can figure out how much of a jackass you are without my help.

I growl and push my legs faster; I'm almost home. When I get home I phase back and punch the door out of my way harshly. My dad, notices my unclothed state, averts his eyes and says,

"Jake, what the hell?"

"I don't want to talk about it." I reply darkly.

Another point for maturity. Great attitude for an Alpha, my mind taunts.

I open and close the door to my room loudly, letting my dad know in uncertain terms that I want to be left alone. I sink into my bed and it groans in protest. I close my eyes and try not to think about Bella, but of course when you try to put something out of your mind it becomes all you can think of. So, instead I wish for sleep to take me.

My alarm wakes me and I quickly turn it off. I check my phone to see if Bella has texted. She hasn't. Well, no surprise there.

I roll out of bed, knowing what I have to do, and shower and eat in record time. I pull up to Bella's house about twenty minutes before I know she leaves for school. I knock on her door and just hope she at least answers it and hears me out. Who could blame her if she doesn't?

I know she hears my knock, but she waits a good five minutes before she answers the door.

"What?" she says shortly.

Well, that was pretty much what I expected, and less than I deserved.

"Can I come in?"

She raises her eyebrows reproachfully but steps aside so I can enter.

"I'm really sorry about last night. I was an idiot." She snorts and nods her head in agreement. "It's just, ugh, it's like that guy is my one vice." God, I hate to admit that.

She snorts again in derision.

"Okay, not my only vice." I correct. "But I'm sorry. I was wrong, and I was an asshole, and I am unworthy of your forgiveness, oh beautiful goddess Bella."

The corner of her mouth twitches, and I can tell she's trying not to laugh.

"What? Do you want me to get down on my knees and beg, your highness? Because I will." I grin cheekily, and kneel down in front of her, wrapping my arms around her waist. "I love you. Please forgive me?"

I pull her shirt up slightly and kiss her flat stomach, and she giggles.

"You're on probation." she conceded. "You don't really think I'm still into Edward, do you?" Her voice wavered with uncertainty.

"No, of course not. I think it's already been established that I'm an idiot. That's my only defense, really."

"Well, you're only an idiot sometimes. Most of the time you're pretty amazing, so I'll let this one slide." She's joking and serious at the same time.

"And you're amazing all the time."

She laughs, "Well, I try."

I decide to try to broach the subject that had caused our fight. Clearly Bella had been upset by it. I needed to make sure she's alright.

"So, why are the Cullen's leaving?"

"They don't think it's feasible to stay in Forks very much longer without questions being raised about why they don't look any older." She sighs. "I knew this day was coming, but it doesn't make it any easier to say goodbye. To everyone but Edward." she adds pointedly.

I raise my arms in surrender. "I know, I know."

She eyes me apprehensively. "Do you want to come with me to say goodbye?"

I find that I actually do want to. The Cullens have been a good ally to the pack, despite everything, and I wouldn't mind parting amicably.

"If it's alright with you, sure. I promise I'll behave."

No shirt, no shoes, no entry. Well fuck. I'm 0 for 2 there. I guess this is as far as I would be going. I suppose I should have thought ahead. Of course they would frown upon a 6'7" Quileute roaming around the airport half naked. There was no way I wouldn't be noticed by security.

"Jake?" Bella asks, noticing my hesitation.

I point to the sign. "I guess this is my stop."

"Oh," she chuckles. "Right."

I turn to the Cullens and shake hands with Esme and Carlisle. I thank him sincerely for all he had done for my pack. He thanks me for being a constant ally to his family. I punch Emmett in the arm as hard as I can, and he returns the favor. It's a little game of ours, seeing if we can hit hard enough to make a bruise appear before it heals.

"Damnit!" Emmett exclaims. "Almost had you."

I laugh.

"In your dreams, Cullen."

I nod tersely to Edward, that's as civil as I will get with him. I can tell Alice wants to hug me, but damnit I have my limits. She settles for a handshake and a friendly tap on the back.

"Don't miss me too much, mutt."

I snort. "No problem there, psycho."

"Don't you mean psychic?"

"Isn't that what I said?"

"Well, best of luck to all of you." Shit that was hard to get out. "I hope Alaska treats you well."

"Thank you, Jacob." Carlisle responds. "Send your pack our best wishes."

I nod and promise that I will.

I watch Bella and the Cullens walk away. How many times did I wish for this very thing? But never in any of those scenarios had I driven them to the airport and bid them goodbye. Life is definitely full of surprises.