*A huge thank you to whoever nominated me for this year's Energize WIP Awards! If you enjoy this story, than please vote for it at the following link. I love you all so very much and am so honored by the thought!
*I in no way shape or form, own these characters, or any rights to the unbelievable fortune that Stephenie Meyer is surely raking in due to the invention of these characters.
*Thanks to all of the very kind reviews and critical, that I have received. I love them all, for the encouragement, as well as the teaching. I love you all!
**I in no way shape or form, own these characters, or any rights to the unbelievable fortune that Stephenie Meyer is surely raking in due to the invention of these characters.
The Volturi would be arriving in only two days. Bella and Jake were well aware of this, but chose to just focus on their family and the twins. Charlie, Renee, Esther, Billy and Sue were all invited to dinner as well as Leah and Jimmy. Bella and Jake had a special and important request to make of them and they didn't want to just casually ask them over the phone.
Bella prepared an entire turkey, with a mini Thanksgiving feast, as she loved Thanksgiving and took the opportunity to enjoy all of their favorite foods. She prepared mashed potatoes, gravy, homemade bread rolls, crescent rolls, green bean casserole for Charlie, Sweet Potato Soufflé for Billy and homemade apple and pumpkin pies for Jake. As their guests began to arrive, there was plenty of Rainer Beer for the guys and wine for the ladies. The twins were made over and Renee and Leah enjoyed the chance to feed them as they had been weaned to formula. Charles and Emily Rose were holding their heads up very well right now and rewarding everyone with smiles when amused, their newest trick. This did not go uncelebrated by the doting Grandparent's. Bella, Esther, and Leah made the final preparations for Dinner and set the table as the guys watched the Mariner's game.
Finally it was meal time and everyone gathered around the dining room table and ate to their hearts content, laughing and having a good time. Now, it was time to ask this special group of people for their help.
Jake stood up. "We are so happy to have you here today as a whole family. We have a very important favor to ask of you and it is imperative that you don't ask a lot of questions about why this is necessary, but we ask humbly that you help us out.
"Does this have anything to do with the werewolf, vampire stuff? Charlie looked worried. Bella took a sip of her wine.
"It does, Charlie, but I am not at liberty to say why, only that it would be better if you all took the twins for us for a couple of days and left town."
Renee suddenly started crying. "What could possibly be that bad. Oh, my God, Bella. What kind of trouble are you in?"
"Mom, relax, please. It will be alright, and I mean it will be. It is just better if the twins are not here to, well, say, use as leverage against us, nor any of you. Please do this thing for us and trust us to make wise decisions."
"How are we supposed to just trust you when it's that important for the twins to leave?" Charlie's face was red and a vein stood out on his forehead.
Looking to Billy, Jacob begged for help with his eyes.
"Charlie, Renee, Jimmy, we will all have to trust Bella, Jacob, and Esther with this one, but I am here to tell you, that whatever it is, that they are more than capable of dealing with it. If you can't just take their word for it, then take mine.
They all sat quiet for a moment. It was Jimmy who spoke up, bouncing his Godson in his arms. "What is it that you need for us to do? Ask and we will do it." He made pointed eye contact with everyone around the table. Normally a bit on the shy side, he suddenly showed great leadership skills.
"We need for you all to go and pack. Please take the twins to Grandma's Lake Kennedy retreat on Vancouver Island. It should only be a three hour drive or so, but please do this for us." There was a long moment of silence.
"Bells, are we going to see you three, well, alive when we get back?" Charlie looked close to tears.
"Dad, we will be alive and just as you see us now. We've got this covered. Taking the twins and yourselves up to Vancouver Island, is just a precaution that will ease our minds, so that we can focus on and attend to the task at hand."
Renee finally spoke up. "We'll do it. Whatever it is that's going on, I do believe that you would tell us if you were in any mortal danger. What I don't understand is why Esther and Leah are staying."
"That I just can't tell you, Mom. I'm so sorry, but I just need for you to trust us." Renee shook her head and accepted their task. Nothing was more important to her than the safety of her defenseless grandbabies. And so it was decided.
That night, Jake and Bella held their twins close, holding back tears, so as not to upset their parents. Giving hugs goodbye and seeing the twins safely in their car seats, they waved goodbye and then held each other while they let their tears flow freely. That night they made love, slowly and tenderly, loving each other thoroughly as only those who were going into battle could understand.
The next morning, Esther and Leah arrived to kidnap Bella for a few hours. Jake reluctantly let her go, but asked that they bring her back as soon as possible.
Bella climbed into the back of the Mercedes wondering where in the world they were taking her as Esther and Leah seemed as thick as thieves. To her astonishment, Esther pulled up to a curb, right in front of a tattoo parlor in Port Angeles.
Turning back to Bella, Esther smiled reassuringly. "Bella, it's time for you to receive your induction into the sisterhood of the Firebird." Bella gave her a questioning look. Esther rolled up her sleeve to her shoulder and showed Bella a tribal tattoo, much like the Pack's but with a Firebird flying upward with flames coming from its wings and tail, with tribal markings in a circle around it. Unlike the Pack's, the Firebird was in vivid colors, but the tribal markings were in black. Bella took a deep breath.
"How bad is it going to hurt?" Bella was nervous as she stared into the window, looking at the template displays.
"It will hurt, but you can handle it, Bella." Leah reassured her. "Come on then." Leah and Esther exited the car and opened Bella's door. Bella climbed out and blew a piece of hair out of her face. Walking into the store front, Esther showed her own tattoo to the man who was one of the tattoo artists. He copied it onto a template and studied Esther's very closely. Showing Esther the template, she nodded her head in approval. "That's it." She said. The tattoo artist turned his attention toward Bella.
"Are you ready?"
"I think so."
"Okay, then, let's get you to a cubicle and I'll gather my supplies. Leah and Esther accompanied her as she sat down in the victim's chair and waited. The man came in with the ink and the needle in which he carefully sterilized, explaining the process to Bella as he went. Now Bella raised her sleeve and braced herself.
"I'm going to have to do the outline first and that will be in black, so it will hurt a bit more than the color, okay?"
"Okay." Bella was less than enthused, but as he started, she realized that it wasn't nearly as bad as getting bitten by James, being thrown into a glass table, or giving birth to twins. She began to relax and talk to the girls while he was working. Two hours later, Bella was inked. Paying the man, Esther smiled her nod of approval to his work and paid him.
As the ladies left, the tattoo artist stared after them. This tattoo bore a similar resemblance to one that he had done on a group of Quilleute boys, about two years back. He wondered if it was some cult or something.
They day of the battle had arrived. Esther took Bella to meditate, to clear her mind and to pray to the Great Spirit for protection. Bella was surprised at how clear her mind was after they finished, and Esther lit a rope of sage and began to bless the both of them, warding off evil. By the time that the Volturi had begun to arrive on the field, the Cullen's giving the guise that they were going to present the newly changed Bella, Bella was ready. She stood nearby her grandmother in the forest, listening to Carlisle addressing Aro across the field. The Pack lay in wait, surrounding the forest for any stragglers once the assault began. Bella and Esther disrobed, folding their clothes and laying them by a tree. Suddenly she heard the conversation turn to Bella. Edward was addressed and it was apparent that Aro was growing impatient.
Jake waited in the trees, unable to control the growl that emanated from deep in his chest. He wanted nothing more than to tear each of the Volturi, limb from limb, but he had to give Bella her chance. He had to see what she was capable of in battle.
"Really, Carlisle. I am bored with these pleasantries. I am growing suspicious that Bella is not changed at all as you seem to be stalling. Either show her, or prepare to be destroyed." Aro said this in a bored and arrogant manner. A smile played at Carlisle's lips.
"Very well. May I present to you, the new Bella!" With a flourish he waved his hand just as Bella phased and broke the tree line. She was amused as Aro looked at first confused and then horrified. She opened her mouth and sung the sweetest song that she could. Both sides of the field were brought to their knees, but for different reasons. The Cullen's, because the beauty of the song was almost too much to bear. The pack whined with emotion. The Volturi however, screeched as the fell down covering their ears. It was then that Bella saw her grandmother break the tree line. Together they swept the field. Most were consumed by the fire of their wings, but few remained. Bella communicated with Esther in her head. "Take out the other two leaders. Leave Aro to me."
"So be it." Esther answered and Esther swooped with precision and assaulted Caius and Marcus, igniting them like molitov cocktails. Aro was left standing on the field completely alone as he saw the giant flaming bird swooping toward him. He let out a shriek as she picked him up in her claws and ascended to great heights, hearing him shriek at her song, all the while swooping down a bit lower she dropped him, causing him wounds, but not mortal. His head was cracking in a few places and he had lost an arm, but he was still very much alive.
Bella let out one more Crescendo of her song and descended in a nose dive toward him. The last sound that Aro ever made was a hiss as she ignited him and listened as he screamed his last, being burned to ash. The pack watched on with awe. Bella was fierce to say the least. Not a single straggler made it off of the field. Circling her kill she sang a song of Victory that brought tears to every eye with its beauty. She finally descended with Esther, behind the tree line and dressed, only to be surrounded by the pack and the Cullen's with screams of victory. Jake broke through and picked her up, his face red and swollen with tears. "Well done, Bella. Well done! I wouldn't have missed that for the world. You were amazing!" Jake kissed her and then dipped her and kissed her again.
Bella shouted out for a cell phone and one was passed to her from somewhere. She opted to call Billy, as Billy had some inclination of what was going on.
"Billy?" Billy could hear the excited chatter in the background and the cheers."
"Bella? I take it that we are victorious."
"It is all clear, Billy. We kicked butt!" Bella couldn't help her excitement.
"Well done, daughter. I'm proud of you." Billy smiled into the phone. "So I gather that it is safe to return home?"
"Please, bring my babies back to me."
"We'll leave within the hour, but Bella?"
"Please tell me that this had something to do with the Volturi?" Bella was silent for a moment.
"Let's just say, that they are merely a footnote in vampire history." Billy couldn't help himself. He let out a giant whoop.
"I want to hear all about it when we get there, Bella."
"I promise, Billy, you'll probably hear about it several times." Bella laughed.
"Great! We'll be there in a few hours."
"Okay, Billy, Goodbye." And Bella shut the phone.
Charlie looked at Billy. "I take it that it's safe to return?"
"We can leave now."
"Billy, you'd best be ready to explain all of this to me someday."
"Someday soon, my friend. Someday soon, but I will tell you that your Bella is the hero of this story." Charlie nodded his head with a smile on his face. Renee gave both of them a questioning look and then decided that she didn't want to know. She ran upstairs to pack, leaving the twins with Billy and Charlie.
That night a party raged on at the Cullen's. Carlisle called Eleazar and gave him the good news. They talked for an hour and had formulated a plan by that point. A new government would be established. Eleazar nominated Carlisle, but Carlisle refused. "I'm a doctor, not a politician. I nominate you, my friend. I also think that within this democracy that we should establish a place for other vampires that have feelings against feeding off of humans, should be able to come and detox, so to speak, learning how to be vegetarians."
"On behalf of Carmen, we would like to offer our property for that purpose. We will build on. The remoteness of Denali would be ideal. I think it an excellent idea. Congratulations to you and to Bella. Please pass my love to your family and extended family."
"Thank you, old friend. I will."
"Goodbye for now, Carlisle."
And it was done. A new and democratic vampire government was burgeoning forth out of the ash.
Bella lay on Carlisle's exam table having her post phase exam. His brow was wrinkled as he studied the blood work reports that he had received via the fax from the hospital. Jake stood next to both twins in their car seats, now four months old.
"Carlisle, what is it?" Jake was severely concerned by the look on Carlisle's face.
"Jake, Bella, I don't know how to tell you this, but, you're going to be parents again. Congratulations?" Carlisle looked a bit uncomfortable.
Jacob looked at Bella and Bella just smiled. "Someone's getting a vasectomy."
Jake smiled back. "Oh, no! No I'm not."
"How much do you enjoy sex, Jake?" Bella was calm but serious. Carlisle had to cover his smile with a cough, a reflex, not necessary for a vampire.
"Okay. Check Mate." Jacob looked deflated.
Seven months later, a very pregnant Bella waited in the maternity ward waiting room. Both her Mom and Emily had gone into labor on the same day. Jake paced the floor. Bella used the bathroom for the fourth time that hour. Leah and Jimmy had graciously offered to watch the now nine month old Charles and Emily Rose.
Dr. Rosemary Givens appeared and walked straight for Bella. "You may want to come with me. Your mother is asking for you and your Dad is currently being checked over after passing out." Bella laughed to Jake. I'm on my way. Giving Jake a kiss, she hurried off. Charlie was currently perched on the second bed in the room, breathing into a paper bag. He relaxed when he saw Bella.
"Bella, come here, please!" Renee was having another strong contraction. Bella rushed over to her and held her hand as Renee breathed through it. "Dr. Givens, I'm feeling a lot of pressure!"
"Okay, Renee, let's have a look." Dr. Givens checked her. "Okay, you've made it, Renee. Just hold on for a second. Breathe." Dr. Givens gave one shout down the hall and a team of nurses appeared. Pulling out the stirrups, they placed Renee's feet in them as Dr. Givens pushed her stool to the end of the bed. "Okay Renee give a good push."
Half an hour later, Renee and Charlie looked at their new son, Aaron Charles Swan. Jacob was ushered in and held Bella as Bella watched her new baby brother adjust to the light and wrap his tiny finger around Charlie's big finger. Bella cried with joy for her Mom and her Dad and held her own belly, wanting to know who it was that was in there. They had opted not to find out the sex this time, since they already had one of each.
Just then, Carlisle appeared in the doorway, congratulating Charlie and Renee, but telling Bella and Jacob that they were wanted in Emily's room. They rushed with Carlisle and were met with the site of Emily weeping and Sam's smiling face as they held their new baby daughter.
Sam spoke. "Bella, Jacob, meet Bella Marie Ulee." Bella burst into tears and rushed to her best friend's side hugging and kissing her and looking at her beautiful namesake.
Two months later, Bella and Jacob gave birth to a baby girl. Phoenix Esther Swan, healthy and screaming. She was immediately cherished just as much as her brother and sister. It was love at first site for both of them. She was beautiful, with Jacob's russet skin and black hair, but would later develop Bella's beautiful brown eyes.
Seventeen Years Later
To Bella and Jacob's delight, Emily Rose had gotten in to Dartmouth on a partial English Lit. scholarship. Charles was working at his Dad's garage and learning the ropes. Someday, he would take his Dad's place, just as Jake had taken good Old Quil's place. The sign that read, "Quil's Garage, still hung on the shop, in memory of Jake's dear friend and the man who had given him a future to support his family. Jake mourned bitterly at his passing.
Bella's stained glass making had taken on a life of its own. Two years after Phoenix was born, she began to open galleries in some of the most prominent cities. Bella Black, was as common a household name as Thomas Kinkade. They never traded in their comfortable home for a larger more prestigious one, but left a legacy for their children with the money that they had earned, after fixing up and adding on to Billy and Sue's house and Paying off Charlie and Renee's. Esther had left her fortune to Charlie, who still worked as police chief until the age of 68, when he retired and went on a country wide fishing tour with Renee in their tour bus, with driver.
Phoenix came through the door like a hurricane, hanging her back pack up by the door, home late once more. "Mom, Dad, we have to talk." Jacob and Bella looked at each other. Phoenix was never serious about anything, so this had to be serious. Jake stood by as Bella sat on the couch.
"Momma, Daddy, I'm in love." Jacob sat down hard on the sofa next to Bella.
"Honey, who is he?" Bella asked.
"You know him. And you know what he is." Jacob's hope soared as he figured that it was one of his son's packmates. Emily Rose had phased into a wolf as well, but Phoenix had just remained plain old Phoenix, which was enough for anyone to handle, all by herself.
There was much yelling, but in the end, Phoenix was bent on her decision. Edward had found the love of his eternity in Phoenix, so happy that he hadn't put Bella through the change in the past, knowing now what he didn't know then. It was the essence of Phoenix inside of her that called to him and oh, how in love he was.
They were Married on July 19, 2029 and spent the rest of eternity together in love, the time passing like seconds for the immortal lovers.
Emily Rose stopped by her Mother and Father's house to check on them. Momma was 81 and Daddy 80 and they didn't get around as well as they used to. She was concerned when she knocked on the door and didn't get an answer. Using her key, she walked in and called after them. Everything seemed to be in order, but still there was no answer. Shaking, she ascended the stairs and pushed open the bedroom door. There they lay, hand in hand, cuddled in to one another. They had passed together in the night, in their sleep. Sobbing, she called Carlisle Cullen.
They were buried in the Black family cemetery next to Billy and Sarah, Charlie and Renee, who had been issued honorary plots, on a Thursday. The Cullen's hearts were broken, though they were frozen. Never had any humans affected their existence so. Phoenix crouched over her mother and father's grave, sadness overflowing, with Edward by her side. Edward placed a single Lupine on each of their graves and Phoenix placed one large dream catcher over the center of their shared headstone. Jake and Bella lived a long life of happiness, love and family. This truly was a full life. Before they had fallen asleep that night, Bella had told Jacob, "I'm so glad that I made the right decision. I love you Jacob Black." Jacob pulled her close and held her frail hand. "And I will love you, Bella Black, for all eternity."