Affection & Wrath

"You knew this was going to happen!" she screamed, accusation and betrayal shining in her watery gaze.

He remained silent, feeling no need to remind her of his parting warning the last time they spoke. Instead, he merely stepped forward, arms open to embrace her in comfort.

"Don't touch me!"

She fought weakly against his hold, but quickly gave in to grasp him tightly. She sobbed into his shoulder and with each twist her clenched hands made in his toga, the sky grew more menacing. There were always consequences for angering the gods.

Zeus was certain that Edward would soon learn that lesson.

"He said..." she paused with a sob, "He said that he was bored of me. That I had merely been a distraction."

A powerful shudder wracked her body then, and he tightened his grip, mindful of her fragile form. He wanted to ask her to turn back, but he knew her grief would be better expelled when her emotions couldn't wreak havoc on the world around them. As much as he wanted to unleash his own fury on her behalf, he did not want to punish humanity for the deeds of a pathetic half-breed.

Although, he imagined that diminishing their food supply might get his message across.

He shook those thoughts away, refocusing on her.

She stood there, clutching him as despair filled her heart. The anguish over Edward's actions was nearly choking her, making her chest feel far too tight. Her weak, human lungs seemed incapable of vocalizing her pain, merely dragging in more air in a desperate attempt to keep her functioning.

He held her until her frail form collapsed from exhaustion.

...

She sat in her room, staring out the window. She could not see the sky as well down there, but she had not had the will to climb to the roof since the night Edward left. She did not have the will to do much lately, which might explain her appearance.

"How long will you continue to mope over the half-breed?" Athena asked in a way that belied her directness, rather than an intention of rudeness.

She kept her silence even as Athena surveyed her room, poking through her belongings. She listened to Athena tut at them, though she did not bother to ask why.

"Doesn't the irony just kill you?" Athena asked mildly.

...

She stood on the edge of a cliff, wondering if he was watching her now.

Is this what the Fates saw? Little Isabella Swan throwing herself off a cliff?

Her demeanor was calm, despite the emotions raging inside her as she plunged into the water.

The waves easily overpowered her, weak as she was. She thought of Poseidon and his hijinks, wondering if this was his doing. He always had a rougher sense of humor, though she imagined that he might have actually created these treacherous waters to aid her.

Human instincts made her thrash, but as her limbs grew numb, she was able to consider other things. She wondered how long it would take for her lungs to shrivel up and her godly form to emerge.

The police would be unable to find the body of Isabella Marie Swan, and she worried how that would affect Charlie. She was grateful for his hospitality, but knew it would be too dangerous to visit him after in order to help him move on.

She would not tamper with his memories—a practice that she would forever loathe. A person's conscious was their own and if they could not even trust that, then they had nothing. She would not ruin Charlie's haven, though she did wish to curb his pain over her passing.

It was for this reason that she initially abhorred the idea of playing daughter, angered by the meddling Zeus had deemed necessary when she first professed her wish to engage more closely with the humans. In truth, she had left Olympus much like an escaped convict, though Zeus had managed to tether her down.

With his ever watchful gaze, it was nearly impossible to do anything without his knowledge.

He must know what she is planning now, though he has made no move to stop her. She didn't need to wonder why—after all, he had prophesized her death months ago. Still, an irrational part of her hurt over his seeming indifference.

She closed her eyes against phantom memories of an Edward that cared, willing her death to come sooner. She could feel it—the fast approaching oblivion that would finally free her of her mortal bonds. Despite her desire to live among the humans before, she welcomed the return of her true form.

Therefore, she was very perturbed when her death was interrupted by a pair of strong—and quite honestly, far too warm—hands.

She gasped when they broke the surface, dizzy and coughing and she tried to clear her water-logged mind. Distantly, she felt herself being lifted ashore, the bleary form of Jacob Black kneeling over her.

"Bella? Are you okay?"

He sounded so worried that she couldn't bring herself to glare at him for spoiling her efforts.

...

Bella stared at the wall, trying to quell her annoyance. Since her stint off the cliff, Jacob had become ever watchful. Although he had agreed to keep it from Charlie, he seemed to think that she was liable to drop dead at any moment.

Of course, he was right about her suicidal mood—and that was what annoyed her most. Why were the people around her so concerned with her safety? She was even more frustrated now that she knew what was coming for her.

Victoria—hell bent on gaining revenge—had killed Harry Clearwater. It pained Bella to know that she had been the cause of the poor man's death and that if she had managed to kill herself sooner, he might have lived.

As it stood, Bella felt as if she were waiting for Victoria to come finish her off. Although she welcomed the death of her current form, she knew she had to prevent that. If a vampire managed to drain her, it would take her very essence as well.

The damage a vampire with that kind of power could do...

Bella shuddered. She was beginning to understand why Zeus secluded the gods on Mount Olympus. Taking a permanent human form—more or less—was very risky. Although she had no doubt that her fellow gods would prove victorious in a battle against any vampire, regardless of their boost in power, she knew that there would likely be human casualties.

Despite the often indifferent or cruel persona that the humans associated with Zeus, he did care deeply about their wellbeing. Losing even one human whose thread shouldn't have needed to be cut yet, produced an ache deep within his heart.

Bella was shaken out of her thoughts at the sound of the phone ringing downstairs.

...

Bella—had she been in her true form—might've demolished the house in her current mood.

Alice Cullen stood on her doorstep, explaining what she had foreseen. A misunderstanding, a distressed phone call, a tactless reply, and the beginning of a terrible outcome.

There was no doubt anymore—this is what the Fates had foreseen. Zeus hadn't been warning her about abandonment or failed attempts at drowning. He knew that this would happen and he also knew what her next step would be.

"He's going to Italy."

Bella knew what that meant before Alice had a chance to elaborate. She didn't understand why he would kill himself over her death, but that didn't matter right now.

Time was running out.