A/N- I want to give a big thanks to Acrosstheskyinstars for her great beta work. Big kisses to Chartwilightmom for prereading and inappropriate loving to Celesticbliss who created the banner that started it all.
Edward watched as Isabella stood overlooking the city. There were more automobiles now; they were almost common place. He still preferred to run but there was something about them that intrigued him. The thought that one day they would be able to move faster than him thrilled him.
He focused back on Isabella, coming up behind her and wrapping his arms around her waist. She leaned back into his embrace but kept her eyes on the happenings around her. A stray hair moved in the wind and tickled against his cheek, causing him to smile.
"Do you miss it?" he asked, wondering where her thoughts laid.
She turned her head up to him. "Miss what?"
"Being human," he clarified.
Isabella laughed and returned her gaze to the street. "Heavens no. Look at that woman there," she said, turning her head slightly. Edward was able to follow her line of sight easily. "Her skirt may be shorter than it used to be, but she still has no rights. She doesn't vote, it's improper for her to be out by herself, and she has but a life in the kitchen before her. That life was never for me."
"I thought you used to like cooking?" Edward asked.
"That was before I found out how much more fun it was to be the hunter," she replied.
Edward chuckled, releasing her to offer his arm as they walked down the street. As she slipped her hand over his bicep, he brought his opposite one to rest over hers. "I have seen much change in my time," Edward mused. "Perhaps we will see a time that you would wish to live in."
"I lack for nothing. I have not only love but equal companionship. I have more of a family now than I ever had as a human. I may miss my father but my life is richer now." Isabella looked up to him. "I wish to live in this time, and the next, with you; like this. My life is exactly what it is meant to be. You may escort me through time, and each era will bring something new and exciting, but this journey would be nothing without you by my side."
Edward lifted her hand and leaned to kiss it lightly. "I had never known how empty my life was until you came to fill it," he replied softly.
~~Six Months Earlier~~
"What do we do now?" Isabella asked, the wind still whipping through her hair as they stood on the roof of the train.
"We need to burn the body. I'm not taking any chances again," Edward replied.
"What can I do to help?" Emmett asked.
"Thank you, but you've done more than enough. We don't want you to be implicated," Edward said.
"Who is he?" Emmett inquired, his eyes narrowing.
Edward sighed, running his hand through his windblown hair. "I think we should move inside, and then we can explain."
A few minutes later, Emmett sat in his compartment listening to Edward and Isabella tell him the whole sordid tale of how Isabella had been the sacrifice; how Aro's plans were leading their race to destruction; their plans to take him down. Emmett looked at the head on the floor by the door and then the body that lay limp across the room.
Emmett's sire had explained to him about the Volturi, as was his duty, but Emmett had never expected to encounter any of them, much less kill the leader.
"So there are more waiting for him somewhere down the line?" Emmett inquired.
"Yes," Edward replied. "From his thoughts, there are two council members and their guard."
Emmett narrowed his eyes. "You can hear his thoughts?"
"Yes, it seems his control at covering them has faded considerably now that he is in pieces." Edward couldn't help smiling at being privy to thoughts he knew Aro had been hiding from him for years.
"But what do we do?" Isabella asked. "We are only two, should we get off the train now with the body."
"Perhaps we are three," Edward replied, looking toward Emmett.
"Actually…" The door to the compartment opened and a curvaceous blonde appeared. "We are four."
Emmett rose and greeted the beautiful vampire at the door. "Edward, Isabella, this is my mate, Rosalie."
Rosalie looked up and down the couple with a haughty eye. "What have you done now, Emmett?"
Isabella couldn't help but glance up at Edward, wondering if he took notice of what a beautiful woman Rosalie was. She didn't want to feel jealous but she couldn't help to feel a bit like her old self in the presence of this siren. Edward, however, appeared indifferent to the woman, instead focusing on Emmett.
"Should we allow you some privacy so you may let your mate catch up with the details?"
Just as Emmett said, "No," Rosalie said, "Yes."
Isabella slipped her hand into Edward's. "We have at least an hour before we arrive, we'll wait in the dining car."
"They seem to be an unusual pair," Edward said once they were far enough away from the room that they would not be heard.
"I'm not sure, she barely spoke a word," Isabella muttered.
"She appears to be tough on the outside but all her thoughts were for her mate and his safety. Apparently he does this quite often."
"Kills someone?" Isabella asked, horrified.
"Gets into trouble, or perhaps mischief is a better word," he clarified. "Emmett has an unusual way to find his meals. He's not a fan of cheaters."
Isabella slipped her hand into the crook of Edward's arm. "She's quite pretty, isn't she?"
Although Edward could not read her mind, he knew from her tone just what she was asking. "I did not notice," he replied.
Edward was grateful that they did not have to sit long in the dining car. Much longer and they might have had to eat something and then perform unpleasant ritual of purging what they'd eaten as their bodies were unable to digest.
Rosalie studied the strange couple in the dining car. Although she trusted Emmett to tell her the truth, their story was extraordinary. But what she found most peculiar was their diet. As she looked at the table, she noticed how easily they sat there. She and Emmett had spent a lot of time building up their tolerance with an embarrassing amount of slips, just so he could play cards, which had been his passion in life. Isabella, while not technically a newborn, she was still young among their kind, and her control was outstanding. Rosalie determined then and there she would change her diet.
She approached them and invited them to return with her back to the compartment.
Edward and Isabella were surprised to see Emmett with a determined face, scratching down something madly on paper.
"I have a plan," he said, not looking up. Edward seemed unsure, but Emmett kept talking. "You two will jump off the train and burn the body. Go back, find your friends, and stick together. Rosalie and I will meet the guards at the stop, telling them that Aro is dead."
"They will kill you," Edward said, not impressed with the plan.
"No, they won't," Rosalie assured. "Emmett can talk his way out of anything."
"You don't even know us, why would you do this?" Isabella wondered.
Rosalie laughed. "Don't worry, Isabella. We like you, but this is the kind of thing Emmett lives for. He was a conman in his human years. He loves to get out of a sticky situation."
"This is more dangerous than I think you both realize," Edward replied.
Emmett finally looked up from his paper. "Take your woman and burn the body, Edward. I will handle this."
Edward was about to argue further but Isabella placed her hand on his arm and her look changed his mind. He extended his hand and thanked Emmett.
"Will we see you again?" Isabella asked.
"Count on it."
The train pulled up to the station and Rosalie shook her head as she felt Emmett rush her along to the doors. As they disembarked, she raised her chin and pushed out her chest.
Emmett quickly spotted the six vampires. Two were clearly in charge and the four around them clearly old and strong. But they were all physically smaller than Emmett, and that gave Emmett an advantage. Or so he thought.
Isabella and Edward made their way out of town. Once they hit the edge, they sped and disappeared into the forest. The trees were familiar, and Isabella knew they had some time, but she was already lamenting having to leave this place. Five years seemed like such a short time in her presumed eternity, but they had to keep moving.
As they entered their home, Esme's voice called out happily, "Edward, Isabella, you are back early." Esme rushed over to Isabella, encompassing her in her arms.
"I think we needed to be with our family today," Edward answered for her, and she looked up lovingly at him.
"Were we called?" Alice said as she came in. A human would have thought she had just appeared there she had moved so fast. Jasper sauntered in slower; he only tended to use his speed when he had to.
Carlisle sat at the table studying his cards, the look on his face comical. Finally, with a small grunt, he tossed his hand down on the table. "Fold."
A loud laugh nearly shook the room as Emmett clapped at his win. "Undefeated again," he exclaimed.
"You need to find something else to do with your life, my love," Rosalie said, coming up behind him and leaning over, kissing his neck.
"I did have another offer, but I didn't want to pursue that line of work."
Alice laughed. "A Volturi guard, if I hadn't seen it, I wouldn't have believed it."
"And you were worried," Emmett said to Edward. "Marcus and Caius shook my hand and said, 'well done.' Then they offered me a job with them."
Edward shook his head. "If I had known they were going to be so happy about it, I would have done it years ago," Edward said, feeling regret for all his mate had been through.
"But then we would have never met," Isabella said softly. "I think I've been very clear about how I feel about that."
Edward leaned in and kissed her, his hand slipping around her back as her palm rested against his chest.
"Another round?" Carlisle asked, still feeling upset at his loss. Emmett perked up.
"Yes," added Isabella, "deal us all in."
E/N- Thank you to everyone who read and reviewed. Thanks to everyone who participated in Fanficaholics Anon's bannerramma contest.
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