Three Years Later
The girls all gasped and my own eyes widened as I looked at myself in Alice's full length mirror.
"Leah..." Mom sighed. If she could, I bet she'd cry. I twirled around and looked at myself from different angles. Alice nodded with a smug look on her face.
"I did good. First fitting: success!" she cheered. I couldn't stop looking at myself. I felt so beautiful. This wedding dress was gorgeous. It was a mermaid style dress, because Alice said 'it complimented me the most.' It was lacey and had beading at the bust. The train was long and had curly embroidery lining the hem. Had Alice really made this with her own two hands?
"Alice, this is so pretty," I finally managed to say. I felt tears spring to my eyes and I started fanning myself. Everyone 'awwwed' and looked like they were going to cry, too. Mom hugged me lightly.
"Don't want to ruin it," she said.
"It's okay! I'm not getting married for a few weeks!"
"Don't gain any weight," Alice winked at me and I slid the dress off, sliding on my jeans and tank top. I glared at her.
"As if." Alice set the dress carefully onto a hanger and rushed upstairs, coming back down in just three seconds. That's when I noticed a folded up piece of paper on the coffee table. The word 'Guests' was written in Alice's loopy handwriting. I picked it up and opened it. I unfolded and I saw a whole list of names; it never seemed to end. I held the paper up at eye-level and it ended at my waist. "What the...? Alice! I thought this was close friends and family! What is this?"
"The guest list, duh!"
"But there's so many people!"
"Of course. The Chief of La Push is getting married. Everybody who's anybody is going to be there." I scanned through the list quickly. At least I knew everyone.
I whirled around and caught Brielle and Jayah in my arms. The two giggled as I hugged and kissed them and blew raspberries on their cheeks.
"Aunty Rosie gave us the most prettiest flowers, Mommy," Jayah exclaimed. 'Prettiest' was one of Jayah's favorite words. She liked words, and would always be using new ones every time I turned around. Even when she didn't know what they meant, she used them if it sounded right to her. I thought it was cute. "But we don't use them 'til the wedding."
"What kind are they?"
"Pink!" Brielle said.
"Is pink your favorite color?"
"Uhuh!" she nodded eagerly.
"And we got the prettiest dresses, too!" Jayah said, hopping out of my arms. She put her finger to her lips. "But they gotta' be a surprise. Daddy and you don't get ta' see them 'til the wedding."
"Oh..." I put my finger to my lips, too, and winked at her.
"I want to propose a toast!" Emily held up a glass of wine. I grabbed mine and the rest of the girls grabbed theirs. Rebecca shook her head.
"I'm not drinking," she said. Everyone dropped their hands and stared at her.
"Since when do you pass up wine, Sis?" Rachael asked.
"Since now," she rolled her eyes and bit her lip.
"Wait...You're not...!" Alice grinned. "Becks!" I gasped, the others following me. Rebecca covered her face and giggled.
"When are you due?"
"February third," she grinned.
"Does Darren know?"
"Yeah." I attacked Rebecca with a big hug.
"Congratulations!" I exclaimed. "I'm gonna' be an aunty...! Again!" I looked at my girls. "You guys are gonna' get some more cousins!"
"Really?" Jayah squealed. She started jumping up and down, Brielle following her. She followed anything that her big sister did. We were all hugging and making wedding plans when the door opened.
"Hola, mi hermanas! Room for one more?" Jazmyn sashayed in and everyone screamed.
"Holy crap, it's Jazmyn!"
She giggled and waved to everyone, giving all of us hugs. When Seth left for California, she and her family decided to move back to North Dakota. She finished high school there and won a scholarship to Texas State University. She's just completed her first year.
"I haven't seen you in forever!" I said, giving her a long hug. She kissed my cheek and pulled away.
"Seth and I bought a house here on the reservation. We're moving back. I'm going to finish my classes online. So is he."
"Sethy's back?" I asked. Jazz nodded.
My brother left shortly after I had woken up from my coma. Carlisle had recommended him to a doctor in California. Someone that could probably fix his legs. He's been there ever since, and I haven't seen him in three years, except for video chats that we do often. But it must've been harder on Jazmyn, considering that they were imprints.
"He's working on getting his degree in architecture. He's real excited to see you, Leah."
"Me, too." I hugged her tightly again. "I'm so happy you're back."
"I am, too." She pulled away and my daughters stared up at her. Jazmyn squatted down so that she was eye level with them. "Wow, the last time I saw you two, you guys were little babies."
"Babies?" Jayah squealed, and started giggling. Brielle joined her. "I wasn't a baby!"
"I wasn't a baby!" Brielle repeated after her. Jazmyn giggled and kissed the top of their heads.
"I still get to be in the wedding, right?"
"Of course! I saved a dress for you," Alice answered.
I couldn't stop looking at Jazz. She'd grown so much. She was curvier. More tanned than I'd last seen her, too. Her skin was so rich in the russet tone. She was taller. Almost my height. Her hair had grown to her shoulders, and her face was slimmer. She looked so much happier than I'd last seen her. I really couldn't believe that it was her.
Since I'm telling you about Jazz, I guess I should tell you about everyone else, too.
Paul and Rachael were married last year, and the triplets were three. They'd be four in December.
Same with Sam and Emily. They got married a couple of months after Jazmyn and her family left, and had a daughter. Amelia. She's one now.
Syanne, Malachi, and Athena have just graduated. Sy still stayed with us, and so did Kyle. She had enrolled in college classes online, and worked at Mom's diner. She and Embry were now dating, and were really in love.
Aecia and Malachi...I smile every time I think about them. I was surprised they didn't even have kids yet, they were so in love. Aecia had grown a lot. Everyone loved her, unlike when she had first joined the Pack. Malachi had grown a lot, too. He had matured almost dramatically over the last few years.
Athena had grown out of her tomboyish ways. There were times when she would wear her famous Yankees flattop hat, but I had come to see it less and less. She was going to college in Seattle at the end of the summer, and promised to come down every weekend. Brady was going to stay here and was doing classes online.
Kim and Jared had a daughter, Mia. She's only six months. They're engaged.
Ashley and Amanda have grown a lot, too. Ashley had a power; life. She's the one that saved me and Seth all those years ago. Now that she was fourteen...Humanly, of course, she was starting to show love for Brandon, who'd left for Princeton. Yes. Princeton. I still can't believe it. Every holiday, he would come down to stay here and run with the guys in his wolf form. I could tell that he still loved being a wolf, it showed after he had had a good run. He was here, now. For summer break. Amanda had started going out with Jason, and it was actually working. He knew of her being a vampire, but liked her too much for it to be a problem.
Teasha and Collin were still here. Teasha had left with Jazz and moved back when she was done with high school, staying in Jazmyn's old house. Collin moved in with her and they were more in love than ever. I'm expecting wedding bells in the near future...
Quil was in college in Florida. Like Brandon, he came down every holiday. He was here now for my wedding. Everyone was. Claire was six. In first grade. Her Elvis phase had died out, though she still liked listening to his music. She was really into Paris now, and was constantly talking about it. She was really popular at school, and constantly had little girls flanking her sides.
So...Me and Jacob. In three weeks, we'll be married. I get butterflies in my stomach just thinking about it. Happy ones, though. Billy had given up his position as Chief of La Push to Jake. So now, I'm the chief's wife...At least soon I'll be. It's weird, because we're constantly having the Elders at my house. But Jacob was a good chief. He'd done so much already. He took charge in renovating all the schools, and had built a new recreational center for the La Push residents. It was built last year and I helped run it, working also part time at the hospital with Carlisle. I helped with babysitting classes and mentored teenage girls. But it's not just for teenagers. Adults go there often for Member's Night, where you could win door prizes. We also have adult and youth sports, and piano classes. Taught by Edward, of course.
Jacob also took the liberty of getting to know everyone on the reservation, and I was always cooking for people. Aside from the Pack, who still came to my house practically every day, we always had newcomers at our house or just people to have people.
Jayah was three and so was Brielle. Jewel would be four tomorrow, and we were planning on having a family day out at the beach. It was almost always sunny nowadays and I loved it. It mostly rained in the early fall and all spring. It snowed through the winter all the way to March. But summertime is almost always sunny. I love it. It's great.
The guys still run patrol, too. The Cullens help them. Jacob's still the Alpha, and all the guys still phase. When they plan on stopping? I'll never know. We haven't had anyone else phase, though. But since the Cullens were still here, I wouldn't be surprised if another person did.
So, everyone's doing good. We haven't had any trouble since Brielle's birth, which is good. But the guys are always on the lookout, though.
"Leah, how do I look? Like a bridesmaid?" Jazmyn twirled around in her spring green dress and laughed. The bridesmaids dresses were that color because that's what I had wanted them to be. The hemline went to their knees and flowed out at the waist. They were strapless, and Alice had chosen black high-heeled sandals for everyone to go with it. Oh, Alice. All about matching.
"You look great, Jazz," I said, giving her a thumbs up. She squealed.
"I just can't believe you're finally getting married!"
"I know," I grinned.
"I'll teach you how to do the fishtail braid that all the rest of the girls are doing," Alice told her, sliding the dress back over Jazmyn's head.
"You sure my hair is long enough?" she asked, sliding back on her shorts. I laughed.
"Duh! Use extensions!"
"Oh, yeah!" Jazmyn giggled.
"Don't worry. I'll do it for you," Alice nodded. I sat down on the white couch and Brielle climbed on my lap.
"You tired, sweetie?"
"Mhm," she nodded and laid down on my lap. I stroked her black hair and hummed.
Both my girls were so beautiful. Black hair to the middle of their backs, big eyes - Brielle's green, Jayah's brown - and the most beautiful russet brown skin. They looked like Jacob, and that's what I loved the most about them. You could see their father in them.
"Alice, for real?" Paul scowled and held his arms out as Alice measured and pinned and measured again.
"Yeah. The girls just got done, and now it's your turn. You guys could've went first if you wanted to. Gotten it over with..." Alice murmured, still measuring Paul's suit. I chuckled and shook my head.
"Doesn't our Paulie look so handsome?" Embry waggled his eyebrows and all the guys died in laughter. Paul scowled some more.
"What about me?" Aaron asked, straightening out his clip on tie. He slid on his little sunglasses and I high-fived him.
"Hi, Unca Jay," he said with a smile.
"Where's your bro? And Kyle?"
"Kyle don't wanna' wear his clothes. He don't wanna' come down, but Rosie's givin' him candy so he gonna' come down prob'ly. Aiden's comin' soon." I smirked and ruffled his hair. "Hey!" He started trying to straighten it out.
"Don't worry, A.J.," Quil said. "It's not the actual wedding day. Your hair doesn't matter."
"Yeah it does!" Aaron argued, still fixing his black hair. He moved it so that it spiked up at the top by his forehead and nodded.
"Okay, Little Guy," Rosalie came downstairs, carrying Aiden and Kyle. Kyle licked a lollipop and Rosalie set him and Aiden down. Alice put her hands on her hips and looked at them
"They good." She nodded. "Hmm...The sleeves on Aiden's are a little too big, but nothing I can't fix. He can take it off now. Aaron and Kyle, too."
"Okay. Come on, you three," Rosalie ushered the little boys back up the stairs.
"Does that mean I can take mine off, too?" Paul asked.
"No! I'm not done yet!" Alice said, coming back with her tape measure. Paul growled and that only made us laugh again.
When we were all done with our fittings, everyone came together for a big birthday dinner for Jayah.
"Jazz!" I exclaimed, seeing her walk into the room. She grinned.
"Jake!" She ran and hugged me.
"Damn...Haven't seen you in a while."
"Right back at ya', big guy." I looked at her.
"You look good. How's college life?"
"It was okay. But I like it here better. So I switched to online classes. Seth and I bought a house on Old Pike Road."
"You guys did what?"
Jazmyn giggled, "We bought a house."
"Really? Where's the kid? I haven't seen him for years."
"He has to finish up a few classes. But he'll be by soon. He's flying up." I huffed out a breath.
"I was really hoping to see him..."
"Aww...But you will!" That's when her phone rang and she fished it out of her pocket. "Hey, that's him now. Excuse me, Jake." She walked out to the back patio.
"Jake! C'mere, Becks has something she wants to tell us," Leah said, tugging on my arm. Everyone was gathered in the Cullen's living room. Leah was bouncing around happily and all the other girls exchanged knowing looks.
"What'd you do?" I asked flatly.
"What? Nothing!" Rebecca answered. I laughed.
"Okay. What do you want to tell us?"
"Like you don't know," Rosalie ruffled my hair.
"No. I don't. Tell me."
Rebecca grabbed Darren's hand and blurted, "I'm pregnant." Everyone looked at me and I frowned.
"Does she gotta' spell it out for you?" Darren asked. "She's pregnant."
"...Okay." I shrugged. "Congrats, Sis." She visibly relaxed and Darren kissed her cheek.
"That went better than I expected," she sighed. The room filled with the sounds of everyone congratulating my sister and Darren. That's when Jazmyn came back in and she handed her phone to Leah. She knitted her eyebrows.
"Hello?" she asked. Her frown turned into a smile and free hand flew to her mouth. "Oh, my gosh! Is it...? It's so great to hear your voice, Baby Bro!" She glanced at me and crossed her eyes playfully, still clearly excited. I smiled at her and rolled my eyes before snatching the phone out of her hand. "Hey!"
"Holy crap, Sis! Your voice got deep!" He laughed. "How's it goin', Jake?"
"Good. Would be better if you were here. Leah's going crazy."
"Hell, yeah I am!" Leah exclaimed. Seth laughed again.
"Don't worry, I'll be down soon. I like my reappearances to be dramatic," he said. I didn't have to see him to know that he was waggling his eyebrows like he always did when he made a joke.
"We all know it," I replied. "Here, I'm going to give you back to Jazz."
"'Kay. Bye!" I handed the phone back to Jazmyn.
"Hey, Sethy-poo...We're celebrating Jayah's birthday right now...Mhm, she's four tomorrow. ...You wanna' talk to her? Okay..." She turned to my daughter. "Hey, Jewel, your uncle wants to talk to you."
"My uncle?" Jayah raised her eyebrows dramatically and Jazmyn nodded.
"C'mere." She grinned and handed Jayah the cell phone. She held it up to her ear.
"Hello? Miss Jazmyn's cellar phone, this is Jayah talkin'." I laughed and shook my head. Jayah cocked her own. "You're my uncle? Mommy says I got one that lives all the way in Cal'forna! She show me pictures of you all the time...Yeah, all the time. And she told me that I call you Sehboo, so I call you that now...Do I get ta' see you? ...For reals? ...Uhuh, it's my birthday t'morrow. I'm gonna' be four! ...Yeah! ...Mmm...I wanna' dolly. ...Yeah. A whole lot of them!" I rolled my eyes at this part. Knowing Seth, he'd spoil her and actually buy her all those dolls. "...Ooh!" She gasped. "OOH! ...Yeah, I okay with it." She was quiet for a long time, grinning widely. I smiled, too. I could hear Seth singing to her through the phone. Jayah cheered. "That was the most prettiest sound that I ever heared in my whole entire life! ...You're welcome...Oh, Okay. I see you soon, Sehboo." She smiled shyly. "Okay. Mwah! Bye!" She handed the phone back to Jazmyn and ran to me. I picked her up.
"Who was that?" I asked her with a smirk.
"It was Sehboo! We was talkin'."
"Yeah! He told me that he says that when he used ta' see me, I was a baby! Just like Miss Jazmyn! And then he told me that he was gonna' come and see me and live here! For reals!"
"For reals?" I tweaked her nose and she giggled.
"Uhuh! And then he told me that he'll buy me all the dollies that I want!" I resisted the urge to roll my eyes at her. I'd make sure that he didn't.
"What else did Sehboo tell you?"
"Mmm...Oh! After that, he singed-"
"Oh. Sang, Jayah. He sang ta' me. He sangme Happy Birthday. It was the prettiest! Then we gave each other kissies! Well, frankly, I gave him kissies." I chuckled a bit. 'Frankly' was her one of new favorite words. She had a lot of favorite words and tried to use them daily. My baby's so smart. "He told me 'I love you, Baby Jay'. But I not a baby anymore. But 'cause he's my Sehboo, I let him call me that."
"Did you guys talk about anything else?"
"Oh. Told, Jayah. Sehboo told me that I gotta' tell Brill that he loves her, too." I pecked her cheek and set her down.
"You go do that then." I nudged her towards her sister and she ran to her.
I laughed and felt some arms snake around my waist. I looked down and kissed Leah's forehead.
"Hey," I said.
"Hey," she said back. "I feel like I haven't seen you all day."
"Well you're seeing me now."
"Yeah. How was your day?" She pulled me to a couch and we sat down.
"Good. The guys are being whiney about the suits, though." I rolled my eyes.
"Lucky for me, my girls love their dresses." She grinned widely. "And the dress Alice made me is so beautiful. It has...Wait." She laughed and pushed on my forehead. "It needs to be a surprise. You can't see my dress."
"Aww...I was trying to stay quiet and go with it. I hoped to get a little sneak peak." I playfully pouted and Leah laughed.
"You're such a dork, Jake," she joked. Brielle suddenly ran up to us.
"Save me!" she squealed. Sam came and picked her up, throwing her over his shoulder. She giggled uncontrollably. "Sammy, sto-op!" She laughed harder and Sam pecked her cheek before setting her back on the ground. Brielle climbed on my lap and hugged me, hiding her face in the crook of my neck. She stole playful glances at Sam, though. He just laughed. Brielle covered her face and then popped back out with an, "Oh, it's you!" she exclaimed, starting one of her favorite games. Sam laughed and ruffled her hair.
"I hope your day went better than mine," he said to Leah. She nodded.
"I think it did. Why?"
"I was stuck with babysitting duty. Amelia ran around the whole house, knocking down everything in her path. She finally fell asleep on the floor and I left her there until Emily got back. It was crazy." He rolled his eyes. "But to be honest, I hid behind the couch the whole naptime. I was scared she was going to pop back awake and start the whole thing over again." Leah giggled.
"Aww. Mimi's a cutie. Where is she?"
"Emily's changing her."
"You know you should start with toilet training, right? How long's she been walking? A month, right?"
"I guess. But I'm definitely not dealing with that." He shuddered and Leah and I laughed. He held his hands out for Brielle. "Mind if I steal her for a bit?"
"No. Go ahead," I waved him off. He took up Brielle and walked to the other side of the room, my daughter giggling and squealing the whole way. Leah turned back to me.
"So what about that dress of yours?" I asked.
"Oh, yeah! So, anyway, it-" She stopped and narrowed her eyes at me with a small smile. I grinned sheepishly. "No way am I giving out that information, mister! You'll just have to wait and see." She winked at me. I kissed her after that.
"But it's hard. I can't wait to be married to you, Leah," I whispered to her. She smiled.
"Me, too...But quit trying to butter me up. I'm not budging!"
Leah's going to kill me.
It's her wedding day. And here I am, all dolled up with the green dress and the heels and my hair all extensioned and fishtailed and everything...But I'm not there. So where, you are asking, am I?
I honked my horn and threw my head out the window, shooting a death glare at the car behind me.
"I hear you! Quit freaking beating your horn at me!" I honked mine back to show the woman that I meant it.
I'm on the highway towards Seattle. Stuck in traffic.
Oh, Lord, please help me make it through today.
Cars inched along slowly, and I groaned. I'm going to be so late. And it's all Seth's fault.
"Fly into Forks, I said. No, I'll fly into Seattle, he said, It's cheaper. Okay, I said," I mocked our conversation as I inched along the road then huffed out a deep breath. I shouldn't have said 'okay'.
The woman honked her horn three times at me and I stuck my middle finger out the window.
Oh, Lordy, forgive me.
My cell phone started ringing and I huffed again, picking it up. Cringing at the caller I.D., I clicked answer, holding it a few inches away from my ear.
"Hello?" I winced.
"Jazmyn Gabriella Stefani Young, I am approximately five hours and thirty minutes from one of the biggest moments of my life. Now I have just one question..." She waited a few seconds before screeching, "WHERE THE FLIPPIN' HELL ARE YOU?" I yelped and dropped the phone, fumbling to catch it and drive forward at the same time. I caught it with a nervous giggle.
"Funny you should ask that..."
"I don't think it's funny!" she screeched. "You're one of the freaking bridesmaids! You're supposed to be here by now!"
"I'm on the highway...Going to Seattle." It was silent.
"I am trying so hard not to freak out right now. Why are you going to Seattle, huh? To have fun? To party? To totally MISS YOUR BOYFRIEND'S SISTER'S WEDDING?"
Ouch. She got me there.
"I'm dressed..." I said, trying to make her feel better.
"Oh, like that'll fix anything! You're supposed to be here!"
"And I will. Just...After I-" Suddenly I heard police sirens. Glancing in the car mirrors, I groaned, seeing a policeman head towards my car. "Crap...Leah, I gotta' go. I'll call you back!" Lie. I'm definitely not calling that psycho back.
"Jazmyn Young, if you hang up this phone, I swear-"
"I love you, Leah! Kisses! Mwah!"
I hung up and turned my phone off before throwing it in the back seat. The policeman knocked on my window and I rolled it down, giving him one of my sweetest smiles.
"Can I help you, Officer?" I asked.
"You know talking on the phone while driving is prohibited on the road, right? You could be fined."
"Keyword: could." I couldn't see his eyes through his sunglasses, but he looked kind of scary so I decided not to keep playing anymore. Time to resort to the feminine charm. "I'm sorry!" I busted out into tears. Acting lessons totally paid off.
So did waterproof makeup.
"My friend's getting married and her little brother needed to be picked up from the airport but I'm stuck in traffic and she called me bawling her eyes out because I'm one of her bridesmaids and it would totally kill her if I'm not there, but I really need to go pick up her brother because they haven't seen each other for years and she'd love it if he was there-" I sucked in a breath and let some more tears flow out. "-but now I got to call her and tell her that I got stopped by the police and will probably spend the rest of my life in jail, and she'll be so overcome with sadness that she won't be able to live her happily ever after with her new husband!" I flopped my head onto the steering wheel, ignoring the little honk that the car let out. I shivered a little for added emphasis. I peeked at the officer to see if he bought my story. He was writing something down. He handed me a piece of paper. I stared at all the numbers on this. "NOW YOU'RE FINING ME WITH ALL THIS MONEY? I'M NOT A BILLIONARE, MISTER!" I screeched. More tears.
"It's not a fine, Miss. I'm recommending you to my massage therapist. It seems like you have a lot of stress in your life. You need to take it easy." He nodded sympathetically. "Have a nice day." He nodded once and left. I waited until his car faded into traffic to throw the paper into the backseat. I wiped away my tears and grinned at myself in the mirror, flipping my braid over my shoulder.
Running. I'm running now.
After three more hours in traffic, I had finally made it to the airport.
Just one question ran through my mind...
Where the heck is Gate 15?
I must of looked pretty crazy. An eighteen-year-old girl running around in a green silk dress and black heels. I was too dressed up for an airport.
I stopped at a big window, giving up. I was never going to find Gate 15. This airport was too big. That's why I preferred long drives rather than these.
Leaning on the rail, I sighed, looking out into the sunny summer day. I watched a plane take off and another land. Then I turned, preparing myself to try again. Then I saw him.
I perked up and gripped the railing around the window tighter. He was breathtaking. He wasn't as muscular as he was when I'd last seen him all those years ago. And I could never tell when we video chatted. But he was toned. He was tanner. A little taller. His face was the same though. And his beautiful hair. But he had a piercing in his left ear. I thought it was cute.
But the thing that brought sudden tears to my eyes was that he was walking. No crutches. No limping. Just walking. Without a care in the world.
He didn't see me at first. I blinked the tears out of my eyes and checked myself in the reflection of the mirror.
"Jazmyn?" His voice sent shivers down my spine. Even over all the noise, I heard it. I turned around, my dress flowing out dramatically from my waist.
Wow. Staring at him was like imprinting all over again. Even thirty feet away, he was so gorgeous.
His grin only got wider as he took me in and he dropped his bag. I squealed.
"Seth!" I ran to him and fell into his open arms. He hugged me tightly and kissed the top of my head. Then I pulled away and kissed him. Three years, I waited for this kiss.
A few people around us 'awwwed' and cheered a bit, but I ignored them. I pulled away and he looked me up and down.
"You're beautiful," he breathed. His voice had gotten deeper. But it was still the way I remembered it.
"So're you," I said back. He gave me a breathy chuckle and kissed my forehead. I rubbed my hand up and down his cheek. "You're taller. And tan. That California sunshine really got to you, huh?" He laughed.
"It's so hard to escape it. Plus, they liked to hold P.T. outside," he shrugged. I looked at his legs.
"They really did it, huh?"
"Yeah. Sixteen surgeries in the time I was gone. But they did it," he looked at me again.
"It was nothing compared to the pain I felt being away from you," he whispered. I glanced down shyly and he picked my head back up with his fingers. He leaned down and kissed me again. "I missed you."
"I missed you more." I picked up his bag and held it out to him. He took it in one arm and wrapped the other around me. We fell into step, going towards the baggage claim.
We were quiet, but it was a content silence. Not awkward. I loved being in his arms again. I've waited so long.
That's when the wedding popped back into my mind.
"Holy crap, we gotta' go!" I took his hand and one of his suitcases and pulled him to the parking area. He laughed.
"Why? Why do you think I'm all dressed up? The wedding starts in thirty minutes! We gotta' beat traffic!" That's when Seth started running with me. We threw his bags into my car and hopped in. I gripped the steering wheel and sucked in a breath, the same time he sucked his in. We glanced at each other and he laughed.
"She's going to kill us," he said flatly. I turned the car on and drove into the summer traffic on the highway. I banged my head against the steering wheel.
She so was.
There are so many people. Did they really all come out to see me get married?
Alice had outdone herself. White whicker chairs covered the sand and a big white arch stood at the end of the aisle. The aisle had a green carpet leading down it. White and hot pink flowers were everywhere that you looked.
The wedding was starting at sunset. Leah had chosen it because it was 'her dream' and our vampire friends and family could come, too. They'd glitter a little, but not so much that anyone would be freaked out.
I was in one of the dressing tents straightening out my green tie. The flap opened and a few of the guys walked in. Paul crossed his arms and grinned, and Embry and Quil slapped my back.
"You nervous?" Quil asked. I shrugged.
"You should be. You're marrying Leah," Embry, who was my Best Man, looked pointedly at me. I mocked horror.
"Oh, I'm shaking." I smirked at him and he punched my shoulder.
"Just don't do anything stupid," Paul said. He gave me one last smirk before leaving. Quil and Embry gave me a thumbs-up before leaving as well. I checked myself in the mirror and toyed with my hair, trying to get it to look right. Alice would have a heart attack if she saw how a strand stuck up where it shouldn't.
Ha. Heart attack. It's funny 'cause she can't have one!
Right? Right...? Okay, guys. Damn, tough crowd.
The tent flap opened and I stared at her in the mirror. I narrowed my eyes.
"What are you doing here?" I asked, loosening my tie a bit. She walked towards me slowly.
"I just wanted to see you," Bella shrugged and smiled. "Wow. I just...You're getting married."
"Yeah." I folded my arms across my chest and turned to her.
"I'm happy for you," she said quietly. I knitted my eyebrows together. "I know we...Didn't exactly split off on a sweet note." I snorted. "But...I know you really love her. You two were made for each other. You have something with Leah that you don't have with me and I respect that." She looked at me and I straightened. She was actually apologizing. She held out her hand but I just stared at it. She scowled. "It's a handshake, Jacob. That thing a person does with their hands." I rolled my eyes but shook it. She smiled grimly at me and waved. "Bye." She left the tent.
I have no clue what just happened, but I don't care right now.
I'm getting married!
Walking out of my tent, I was bombarded by Alice.
"Great! C'mon, you need to take your place at the altar. We're about to start!"
When I was in my place, I folded my hands in front of me; it seemed like the only logical place to put them. Edward started playing a song on the piano - yes, they had brought a piano here - and the guys all started down the aisle. They shot me joking looks and faces as they went to my right side. Embry patted my shoulder and I grinned at him. I looked back out at the aisle as Emily, Leah's Maid of Honor, walked down. Then all the other bridesmaids followed after her. They each held a small bouquet of hot pink flowers. They all smiled at me and Rachael winked after sticking her tongue out at me. I smirked and shook my head.
The little ring bearers were next. Kyle held the pillow with the rings on it while Adam and Aaron walked on either side of him. Kyle supported the pillow with one hand while the other was casually wiping his eye. Aaron punched his shoulder and he stopped, making everyone laugh. Paul gave his sons and Kyle high fives when they made it.
Then my daughters came down. They carried a white basket with a green bow wrapped around it. Jayah had one side while Brielle had the other. They reached in at the same time to pick out flower petals and spread them on the aisle. Well, Jayah did. Brielle waved to everyone who all waved at her back. I laughed and they skipped up to me.
"Hi, Daddy," Jayah waved at me. "You like our flowers?"
"I love your flowers," I answered. I kissed the tops of their heads and they went to stand by Emily.
Edward changed to the Bridal March and the congregation stood. It was quiet as Leah appeared.
I felt my heart stop.
Words can't even describe how beautiful she looked right now. Just...Beautiful? Gorgeous? No. They're small adjectives compared to what she actually looked like.
Her dad would be proud.
I hope that Mom was proud of me.
Leah walked slowly down the aisle as everyone admired how beautiful she looked. But she was looking at me the whole time. I can't describe the feeling that washed over me. It was like...It was like I was imprinting. All over again.
It was just me and her. Her and I.
When she was finally reached me at the end of the aisle, my heart dropped to my knees. She was even more beautiful now that I could see her up close. She gazed into my eyes and I looked down into her green ones. They sparkled, and I could see a hint of tears in them. I took her hands and massaged her knuckles. She smiled at me and then turned to my dad and he looked at the two of us. He sighed.
"You may be seated," he said. "Words can't come to describe how proud I am of you, Son," he continued. I glanced at Leah and grinned wider. He looked out to everyone else. "We are here today in the presence of family and friends to share with Leah and Jacob the most important moment in their lives. By this ceremony you will become husband and wife, but the soul of your marriage depends on the constant renewal of the choices and promises of love for one another you make today. If you truly love each other you will always be loyal to one another. No matter what the cost always believe in one another, always expect the best of one another, and above all else, always support one another in everyday living. Love is something beyond the excitement of romance and being in love. It is a committed, thoughtful decision. Love is nurturing. Love is listening. Love is caring about each other. Love lightens burdens because you divide them. Love intensifies joys because you share them." I glanced at my daughters when he said this part.
"The step which you are about to take is the most important into which human beings can come. It is the union between two people founded upon mutual respect and affection. Your lives will change, your responsibilities will be increased, but your joy will be multiplied if you are sincere and earnest with your pledge to one another. Now, I believe that you've written your own vows...?" Leah and I nodded. "As usual, ladies first." A few people chuckled and Leah giggled a little before looking at me.
"Jake..." she sighed. "I...I can't even get my words right!" She laughed a little and shrugged. "Okay, all jokes aside, I love you. So much. From the time we met-" We both made a face and everyone laughed harder. "-to now. Sure, we had our fights. Some small. Some big. But in the end, I know that we'll always forgive each other. You're funny, caring, sweet..." I waggled my eyebrows and we all got some more laughs. Leah smiled. "You've been with me through everything, and I couldn't ask for more." A small tear slid down her cheek. "Whew, thank goodness for waterproof makeup." We laughed together. "...I've loved you through all of it and I can't wait to spend the rest of my life with you. I promise with all my heart to love you through everything." I wanted to kiss her, but knew that I had to wait.
"Leah, the first time I met you, I thought you were the craziest chick in the whole universe. You were so stubborn and hardheaded, and you can scream louder than a banshee." She threw her head back and laughed, unhooking her hand to wipe a few tears away. "We've been friends for as long as I can remember, and I honestly didn't expect to be standing here today. With you. But I wouldn't trade it for anything else. I could go on for days about how beautiful you are, I could stare into your eyes for hours and get lost. I'm so in love with you, it's crazy.
"You're the mother of the two most beautiful daughters a guy could have. You're smart, witty, hilarious, beautiful...Beautiful can't even describe you, Leah." She was crying quietly and I wiped away a tear off her flawless cheek. "I'm ready to go through it all together. When the girls go off to school, we'll be there. Their first tooth. Hell, I'll be waiting with my gun when they bring that boy over from school." Everyone started laughing and I grinned, winking at my two daughters. When the laughter died out, I continued, "I want to grow old and gray together. Now, I know that I've had a really bad reputation with promises before. But, Leah, you've changed me. So I promise, with everything that I have and own, that I'll stay with you through it all." Leah raised her eyebrows.
"Through all the crazy times, too?"
"Everything," I answered. She grinned at me and more tears flowed down her cheeks.
"For the beauty around us," Dad continued after a few seconds, "the strength it offers and the peace it brings, we are grateful and honored to be a part of the life you have chosen to live as husband and wife from this day forward." He looked at me and I turned to Leah.
"Will you, Jacob, have this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife - to love her, comfort her, honor and keep her, forsaking all others, for so long as you both shall live?" he asked.
"And will you, Leah, have this man-" Har-dee-har-har, he made a joke. That got some laughs, too. "-to be your lawfully wedded wife - to love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, forsaking all others, for as long as you both shall live?" Leah sighed and squeezed my hands.
"You sure about that?" Dad asked. Everyone erupted with laughter and I rolled my eyes.
"Very funny, Dad."
He chuckled, "Do we have the rings?"
Everyone turned to Adam, Aiden, and Kyle. Aiden and Kyle were playing around and Aaron punched their shoulders.
"Oww!" Aiden exclaimed. He crossed his arms and glared at his brother.
"The rings!" Aaron flailed his arms around. Kyle sprang into action and held them out to Dad.
"Thanks, son." Kyle looked happy, his arms still extended. Dad took one of the rings and handed it to me. "Repeat after me, Jacob. With this ring, I, Jacob-"
"With this ring, I, Jacob-"
"Take you, Leah-"
"Take you, Leah-"
"To be my wedded wife; to have and to hold-"
"To be my wedded wife; to have and to hold-"
"For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, to love and to cherish from this day forward." Leah shook a little with soft, happy sobs as I slid the ring on her finger.
"For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, to love and to cherish for this day forward," I said. Dad took the next ring and placed it into Leah's hand. She looked at me and blinked a few times, getting the tears out of her eyes.
"Repeat after me, Leah. "With this ring, I, Leah-"
"With this ring, I, Leah-" her voice was shaking and I smiled a little.
"Take you, Jacob-"
"Take you, Jacob-"
"To be my wedded husband; to have and to hold-"
"To be my wedded husband; to have and to hold-"
"For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, to love and to cherish from this day forward." She slid the ring on my finger and gripped my hands tighter.
"For better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, to love and to cherish from this day forward." We grinned at each other.
"I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may now kiss the bride." Leah threw her arms around my neck and I kissed her.
"Woohoo! Yeah!" Embry cheered. Everyone else did, too, and the little ones giggled and pretended to throw up.
"Yuck!" Aiden stuck his tongue out.
"I think it's very romantic," Jayah said. 'Romantic' was her new favorite word.
Leah and I pulled away and held hands, still gazing at each other.
"Ladies and gentlemen," Dad said. "Mr. and Mrs. Leah and Jacob Black." More cheers went through the crowd as we walked down the aisle. Leah and I held hands, walking towards the shore. Towards our forever.
I can't believe it. I can't believe it. I'm married. M-A-R-R-I-E-D married! I'm so happy right now, I could explode.
Alice spent forever taking pictures of me and Jacob, Jacob and the guys, me and the guys, Jacob and the bridesmaids, me and the bridesmaids, me and my daughters, Jacob and our daughters, and then finally me, Jacob, and our daughters together. But I didn't mind. We took a lot of funny ones and a lot of nice ones, too.
My favorite is the one of Jake holding me bridal style. We were wading in the water and the sun cast pink and orange streaks in the background.
I also liked the one where Brielle's climbing all over Jacob's shoulders and head and Jayah's in his arms holding a flower. He's kissing her cheek and Brielle's making a little heart with her hands.
And lastly, there was one where I knelt down to kiss Kyle's cheek. He held the ring pillow in his hands and he was blushing madly. That one was cute, too.
Right now, everyone was celebrating. There was a huge bonfire and dancing and food and everyone was having a good time. I was dancing with Sam.
"Is it weird seeing me like this? We thought it was going to be us," I said to him. He shook his head.
"I thought it would be, but it isn't. You and Jacob belong together. Fate made it that way. I'm not going to barge in and take that away from you." I smiled.
"Aww...Sam..." I leaned up and kissed his cheek and he walked off with a small wave. Emmett stepped up on the small stage and tapped the microphone.
"If I can have your attention!" He called. It got quiet and everyone turned to him. "I have a special surprise for everyone. But mostly Leah. Our lovely bride!" He gestured towards me and everyone cheered and clapped. I laughed and curtsied. "So...Without further ado, take it away, Jazz!" I crossed my arms and glared at the stage as Jazmyn took her place.
"Leah, please don't kill me! I was busy getting you your wedding gift!"
"Really!" she nodded.
"It better be the Eiffel Tower, Jazmyn!" I yelled. There was laughter. Jazz looked up in deep thought and then looked back at me, shaking her head.
"Nope!" she answered, popping the 'p'.
"Turn around and see for yourself!" she yelled. I knitted my eyebrows together and she waved her arms, signaling me to turn around. "Turn! Turn!" I did. There were squeals and cheers and screams as Seth walked forward, his hands casually resting in his pockets.
"You are probably the most stubborn person that I've ever met," he said, shaking his head. My hands covered my mouth and tears flooded down my cheeks. I couldn't say anything. He was here. He was walking. Here and walking. He gave me jazz hands and everyone erupted into more cheers. "Surprise." I threw myself on him and he hugged me back.
"Sethy! Oh, my gosh, Sethy!" I cried. I pulled away and sniffed, looking him from top to bottom. "You look...Oh, my gosh!" I hugged him again, shaking with sobs.
"If our D.J. will be so kind, I'd like to dedicate this song to siblingship!" Jazmyn laughed. "The love between brother and sister is priceless. There's not trading it for anything," she added sweetly. I laughed, still sniffing back tears, and Seth took my hands. She started singing, and Seth twirled me around.
He laughed a little.
"Remember when we were kids and you used to make me play 'wedding' with you? You made me play the groom, and I'd twirl you around just like this."
"But you were so short then. I would have to bend down to do it." We laughed. I glanced at his legs. "They really fixed them?"
"Yeah. It was a lot of surgery, but they did."
"You'd never know, though. No one would ever be able to guess what happened to you."
"Mhm." We were silent for a little while, just swaying to the music. "He would be super proud of you right now, Sis."
"Huh? Oh. Yeah." I looked down. I was sad that he wasn't able to be here today. "You know, I always pictured him here with me. We'd be the first ones to dance. And he'd rock me around and pick me up and swing me around like when I was little." I glanced at our feet. "But it sounds stupid now."
"No. It doesn't. I thought he'd be there when I graduated-"
"None of us were there when you graduated."
"Not the point, Leah."
"Okay. Carry on."
"So I thought he'd be there. And when I looked out into the audience, and looked next to Mom, I expected to see him there. But he wasn't." I hugged him.
"It's okay. He wouldn't want us to be sad on the best days of our lives, though. I know he's here. And he's looking down on us right now." Seth smiled at me.
Now I'm just rolling home...
"Dang, Baby Bro. Did you take dance lessons when you were in Cali? I don't remember you being this good of a dancer." He chuckled and it was then that I noticed that his voice got deeper.
"Shut up and dance, Leah."
That God bless the broken road that led me straight to you
He ended our dance with a tight hug and a kiss to the top of my head. Everyone erupted with cheering and clapping.
"I missed you, Sis," he whispered. I could hear him, though.
"Me, too, Baby Bro. Me, too." He looked at me and grinned. Then he turned and saw Jacob.
"Hey, Bud." They shook hands and hugged. "Damn, I missed you."
"Of course you did," Seth waggled his eyebrows.
"Mind if I steal my wife from you?" Jake asked. I loved that. Wife.
Seth held up his hands and grinned, nodding his head.
"Why do you need to ask? She's yours now, Man." He winked at me and stalked off, undoubtedly to go to Jazmyn. Jacob took my hands and we started swaying to the soft music that played. I laid my head on his chest and he planted a kiss on my head.
"It feels great being married to you," I said.
"I bet you my side feels better...!"
"Oh?" I looked at him and quirked an eyebrow.
"So what's better about your side?"
"Well, on my side I can see how beautiful my wife is. How her green eyes sparkle, even when it's dark. How her ebony hair glistens in the moon's light. The way her lips move when she's talking. So enticing." He planted a kiss there. "Her beautiful russet skin..."
"Hmm...Well your side does sound better than mine."
"You bet it does."
We swayed some more and the whole world disappeared. Jacob was my everything. The person I could go to when I was happy or sad. When I needed help. He would see me through it all because he promised me.
I stood on my tiptoes to plant a kiss on his lips.
Sob, sob. Cry, cry. It's OVER! I can't believe it!
I'd like to thank everyone who has been with me through the beginning! brankl1, especially! You've been with me since Chapter 1!
Even though this is the end, I'm going to leave you guys with a good note! I'm writing a sequel/companion to this book. It'll be up by the end of this week so you won't have to wait long!