Warnings: NC-17, car!sex, outdoor!sex, rimming, and sci-fi plot twist.
Author's Notes: The legend of the creation of the Milky Way is a modified version of the Cherokee one.
This story was hard to write because it deals with loss and mourning. Nevertheless, the kind support of the readers gave me the encouragement to finish writing the tale of how Jake and Edward found the way to leave the past behind. Here, they begin to travel the endless road.
6 months later
The rows of white slabs stood neatly in the carefully tended lawn by the side of Callawah Way. The trees in the distance lent a forlorn look, though.
Clutching the bouquet of her favorite flowers, I walked slowly towards Bella's last resting place in the Forks Cemetery. I bent down and put the freesias by the headstone, shuddering when my fingertips grazed the cold slab.
I took a deep breath, trying to dislodge the knot in my throat and dispel the sadness that cloaked me like a blanket. Cullen had offered to come with me, but I refused. I knew my Edward would be devastated at the memories which would make him brood. His handsome face would twist in a grimace of despair, and the grin that made my heart beat madly would disappear.
I had to do this alone.
My vampire was very stubborn though, so I enlisted Rose's help. She convinced him to test drive the Porsche Carrera. Much as I wanted to see him driving the car we renovated, and watch the wind ruffling his hair, I knew I had to come here to pay my last respects to Bella. After all, I was getting married in a week.
"Hey, Bella," I said in a hoarse whisper.
What could I ever say to the dead that know everything? I gazed up at the cloudy sky, picturing the river of stars that swirled above us. It was where the spirits of our people dwelled, the Ghost Road my father told me about. Quil had helped me appease her ghost spirit, offering small amounts of food throughout the year, even when I had been too busy otherwise. Soon I would feed it for the last time, so she could rest in peace in her campfire in the Milky Way.
I closed my eyes, imagining one of the bright stars held Bella's tent. She was sitting by the fireside, warm and happy as she looked down on us.
"I miss you, even though my memories are hazy." Opening my eyes, I gazed at the copse of trees in the distance, and the limbs swaying in the breeze soothed me.
"Was mad at you, Bella." Hunching down my shoulders, I said quietly, "You didn't choose me and you led me on. That's why I left."
I was determined to pour out my heart and let her know everything. "I'm sorry I didn't return. Despite what Edward says, sometimes it feels that if I had been here, I could have saved you."
I bit my lip, thinking about the choices that had led me here. Sure, we had beat the Volturi plan and saved the tribe. There were bits and pieces that still puzzled me, though. Kiepel's hints were odd, and I didn't understand completely why the virus turned out to be deadly for vampires too.
I pushed those thoughts aside for the moment, fidgeting with the collar of the cotton shirt. It scratched my neck, and the black suit felt too warm.
I took out from my pocket the dreamcatcher I made for Bella. Edward gave it to me months ago.
"The resentment is less, Bella. I understand you a bit more, why you acted the way you did. You loved Edward and wanted your child. I respect that."
I laid the dreamcatcher upon the grass, knowing the sinew would shrivel away to nothing, as fleeting as everything under the sun.
"I love Edward too. Love him more than I ever loved you." I crouched above her tomb, looking down at the letters that formed her name. "I'm sorry but that's the truth. You were mad at me many times, Bella, but I always told you the truth. Wish you could have done the same with me."
I took a deep breath and remembered the good times I had with Bella, so I could say my final farewell to the girl I once loved.
"I miss you, Bella. Miss my best friend. When I ride my bike it reminds me of you." I felt moisture coursing down my cheeks. "Sometimes I crack a joke and remember when I coaxed a smile out of you, and I am still angry at you, Bells. Mad that you're not coming back."
Crossing my arms, I broke down and sobbed bitterly, recalling the past and things that would never come back; the joyful moments with her and my dreams of the future which never came true.
I heard soft footsteps on the grass and smelled a familiar scent. Startled, I brushed the back of my hand across my cheeks to wipe off the tears and tilted my chin to look up at Charlie Swan.
"I visit her when I feel sad." Charlie gazed towards the trees, obviously giving me space to regain my composure. "Hardly anyone comes here. Renée wanted to bury her in Florida but I insisted it should be where Bella was happiest. My family had a plot on Old Clallam Bay Cemetery, but this place is closer."
I sighed brokenly and made to stand up. Charlie bent down and grabbed my hand, yanking me up.
"Sorry, Chief Swan."
"Don't be, Jacob." He frowned at me, sticking his hands in the pockets of his jacket. "We both loved Bella very much. When I heard that you and Edward were tying the knot, I was sad because you are the man I wanted her to end up with. I felt you two were made for each other."
Tears ran down my cheeks as I lowered my chin. "Edward loved her very much, Chief. I've come to respect her choices. Too late."
"No, son. It's never too late." Charlie glanced towards the copse of trees. "I worry about you, Jacob, so keep in touch. Don't be a stranger."
I noticed more grey hair peppering his hair and moustache, and his worn face had more lines. I stepped towards him and hugged him tight.
Charlie petted my back awkwardly. "Still so warm, Jacob. You understood Bella like no one else. Take care."
I flexed my arms, enjoying the sense of freedom after changing clothes when I returned to the Cullen house.
"What are you going to do now that you've passed the tests?" Rosalie hefted the socket wrench close to her dark coveralls.
"Don't know, Rose. I'll decide after the honeymoon." I reached my hand towards her.
She gave me the tool, grinning mischievously. "You've got a smudge on your pert nose."
"Oh, thanks." I rubbed it off and wiped my hand on my t-shirt. Then I crouched down to tighten the lug nuts on the tire.
"Those guys at the shop never fixed the suspension of the Volvo properly, Edward is always complaining," Rose said with a smirk. "I wonder why."
"He shouldn't have wrecked his own car," I stood up and took a step back, splaying my hands over my shirt. "That should fix it, until the next time he complains."
When I glanced at the floor, I noticed a grease spot marring the Talking Heads logo on my shirt.
"Edward was jealous, wolf. You should have seen him that day," Rose said.
"Damn!" I pulled off the sweat-soaked t-shirt, wiping my torso with it before throwing it at the Porsche. "That's the new shirt Edward gave me."
"Sleek lines and color," said Rose admiringly. "No wonder he got jealous."
I glanced at the shiny metal which formed the chassis of the newly waxed Porsche, inhaling deeply to smell the leather seats inside.
"A thing of beauty." I nodded, rubbing my sweaty abs with the palm of my hand.
There was a smidgen of oil on the car I hadn't noticed before. I walked up to the Porsche and leaned over the hood. It was on the other side so I had to reach lengthwise to wipe it off.
Rose wolf-whistled. "Nice rear fenders!"
Wondering what she was talking about, I rubbed my fingers across the spot and then stood up to gaze at the row of cars in the huge garage. I noticed a blurry shape rushing towards me and smiled at Edward.
He wrapped his arms around me and kissed me, his tongue slipping into my mouth like it belonged there; he thrust his hips aggressively against mine and I stumbled towards the Porsche as he shoved me forward.
Edward broke the kiss and said loudly, "Rosalie, would you mind?"
He splayed his hand all over my chest, rubbing circles against my nipples as his thigh wiggled up and down, wickedly rubbing my arousal. I started to groan but he closed his mouth over mine, trapping the sounds while I looped my arms around his back.
"I'm leaving, Edward. Don't wreck the car!" From the corner of my eyes, I saw Rose walking towards the door as she called over her shoulder, "On second thought, do wreck the car, guys. We'll just fix it again. Have fun!"
I jerked my neck back to escape the tongue that was intent on mapping my mouth; wrapped my leg around his hip and gazed at him. "What brought this?"
"You, Jake." Edward stepped back, searching my eyes while his fingers opened the zipper of my Wrangler. He wrapped his fingers around the buckle of my belt and yanked it so violently, it made a swishing sound as he threw it across the garage. It fell on the floor with a soft thud.
"Do you know how sexy you looked just now?" Edward's intense gaze made me shiver. My dick twitched and the cockhead rubbed against the wet spot spreading on my briefs.
"I read Rosalie's mind. Sweaty chest, light glinting all over your slick body." Edward licked a swath down from my shoulder to my abs, his tongue swirling around the muscled ridges as his thumbs hooked around the loops of the pants. He knelt on the floor and yanked down my pants and underwear, freeing my cock which bobbed in front of his face.
His hands kneaded my rump. "Your pert ass on display."
I whimpered low in my throat as he tilted his head to tease my slit with his tongue.
He gazed up at me. His dark eyes gleamed with lust, and the wet tongue teasing my cockhead made my knees buckle. I would have slipped to the floor but he hooked his arms behind my thighs to hold me up as he swallowed my length.
"God!" I splayed my hand on his face, my fingertips tracing the bulge on his cheek my dick made as he took me to the root, his nose pressed against my wiry hair.
Cradling the back of his skull, I thrust forward. I grunted at the vibrations on my dick when he moaned. Rolled my hips to get more of the wet suction, but Edward slid off my cock. His tongue did crazy things to the shaft, and it finally slipped off with a popping sound. He wrapped his hand around the base, looking up at me with that intense gaze while he wiped the drool and precome off his chin with a lazy swirl of his thumb.
"You were leaning over the car, showing your assets." He spread my buttocks with his thumbs. "You were flaunting your pretty ass which belongs to me, and I wanted to do this…"
In a blur, he manhandled me and turned me around, pushing my chest onto the hood while he shoved my legs apart with his knees.
I bit my fist to keep from shouting as his fingers played with my rim.
"You should see yourself, Jacob. Pants around your ankles, writhing on the car, hole twitching. You're so beautiful." I felt his cold breath on the crease of my buttocks and I keened.
"So eager." His tongue licked a swath down my crack and I bucked up my hips to get more of the raspy sensation. I tried to spread my legs but they were trapped by the rough denim around my ankles.
He spread my ass with his thumbs, nibbling the skin between my buttocks before his tongue finally speared me, rubbing the inside of the rim before he stabbed it deeper. Bellowing, I thrust back to ride his tongue.
Heard the springs of the car creaking as the hood jiggled up and down. His face pushed me against the chassis while I writhed at the slick finger he slipped inside my body.
Blushing at the lewd slurping sounds he made as he ate me out, I wiggled on the hood of the Porsche and arched my ass, eager to enjoy the attentions of his talented tongue.
Tried to hump the car to relieve my aching need, but he held my hips to prevent any movement.
"You're so naughty, wolf." Edward breathed against my entrance as he stabbed another thick finger inside me, searching for my prostate.
"Please, please!" I moaned.
"What? Didn't hear you, Jake. Distracted by the sight of your gorgeous body swallowing my fingers." A third finger jabbed inside. I squirmed at the cold lube he spread inside me. He scissored his fingers, stretching my insides. My abs rubbed against the moisture on the warmed metal from the precome leaking from my dick. I groaned as his fat knuckles rubbed against my walls while the pad of his thumb played with my sensitive rim.
It burned, but being full was delicious. Wanted to feel him inside, though.
"Fuck me, come on, fuck me!"
His fingers slipped out and I felt achingly empty, my entrance twitching at the cold air of the garage on the wet skin.
Felt Edward's firm thumbs on my buttocks, spreading them just before he sank the blunt cockhead. Hurt for a second and I whimpered. Edward stopped, just the flange of his cockhead spreading my hole. I craned my neck to glare at him.
"What are you waiting for? Go on!"
"So needy!" He groaned heatedly as he stabbed his cock inside until he bottomed out. It filled me so much I wouldn't be surprised if the cockhead reached up to my throat. Felt fit to burst.
He put his palm on my back and pushed me onto the car. The force of his wild thrusts as we fucked made me slide across the hood until my feet left the floor.
The car lurched back and forth and the suspension below me creaked over and over. His thighs slapped against my ass when he bottomed out. On the outward stroke, he moved teasingly slow and I clenched around him, wanting him to lose control, to make him as hungry as I was.
My cheek was pressed against the metal and my nostrils flared, drinking the scent of wax and leather combined with his musk. I licked my lips, wanting to wrap my lips around his dick.
Cursed the rough denim confining my ankles that kept me from spreading my legs wider. My hands tried to grab purchase on the metal but it was useless. Then he hauled my legs upwards and I grunted at the new angle which allowed deeper penetration, moaning when his shaft rubbed against my prostate. I curled my toes inside my sneakers as he dragged his dick over it. Again and again. I could almost picture his smug smirk.
"So wanton and open, kwolie."
I blushed hotly against the cold metal when he called me that while he fucked me.
"You're my wolf, forever." His hand snaked between my abs and the wet hood which was groaning under the force of our fucking, making squeaky sounds as my chest slid across it with his thrusts.
He encircled my throbbing cock with his thumb and forefinger, swirling his thumb over the sensitive nerves below the crown just the way I liked it. He leaned closer; his body heavy over me as he mounted me, his cock spreading me open.
I was seeing stars on the edge of my vision.
"Harder, dammit! Wanna feel you for days!" I panted, twisting my arm so I could reach his body. Grabbed his cotton shirt and pulled him towards me. The bastard hadn't even undressed to fuck me!
He licked my ear shell and turned my sweaty face towards him. At a particular sharp jab of his dick I groaned, and he took the opportunity to slip his tongue inside my moth, jabbing it just as hard as he was poking my walls with his huge prick.
I could taste myself on his tongue; it merged with the wax scent that I was sure would cause me to sport a boner from now on. It overwhelmed me, just like the squeaking of the car springs beneath as he took me hard, and his cold body pressing me against the metal. He fisted my cock, his thumb rubbing wickedly against my soaked slit as he thrust inside.
Stars swam in my eyes as I came hard, enjoying the best orgasm of my life. The come spattered my chest and abs, my entrance clenching helplessly around the girth that kept me deliciously stretched.
He rolled his hips, stabbed hard my insides once, then twice before he came with a guttural groan.
"You ok, Jake?"
I nodded weakly, hardly aware of his come dribbling down my thighs, or Edward wiping my swollen skin tenderly before he lifted me in his strong arms to lay me down on a mat on the floor.
A week later
"Jacob, don't you want to eat something more substantial?" Esme smiled warmly, holding up a tray filled with sandwiches. I would have wolfed down the lot because they looked delicious; the green lettuce peeking from between loaves of bread contrasted with the brown, crisp slices of bacon.
"Nope, thanks. My stomach's fluttering with nerves."
She nodded briefly, her glance sliding towards my hungry pack mates who were watching the tray like predators.
"Esme, I want to thank you for everything you've done." I shot a grin at her, admiring the way the curtain of dark hair framed her pale face. The composure and warmth in her regard won me over since the start.
She laid the tray with the sandwiches on the table and smiled at me. "You need to eat, Jacob. I'll just leave it here for you and your friends. And you're welcome; you have earned your place in our family."
"Thanks," I mumbled thickly as she made her way to the door.
The moment Esme left the room, Quil and Seth fell on the sandwiches like ravenous wolves. I rolled my eyes and stuck my hands in my pockets. Unfortunately, Embry was still on patrol.
I fiddled with my tie, my thumb sliding across the silk which felt as smooth as Edward's skin. I wondered if my man was being pestered by Emmett and Jasper at this moment. Felt a little guilty after I winked at Alice and sent her to his room, suggesting I wanted to see him at his best.
Leastways, I wasn't suffering this torture alone.
Glancing at the door, I shivered when I realized he was probably listening in on my thoughts. 'Sorry that I couldn't resist the temptation, kwo pat. I love you.'
"Earth to Jake, Earth to Jake!" Seth was waving a sandwich at me.
"Sorry, got distracted," I said, batting away his hand.
"Give it here, Seth." Quil took the sandwich and leaned against the table. "Jake was obviously thinking about his mate."
"Oh, I see." Seth shrugged.
"Picturing his wedding night, I guess," Quil said innocently.
I felt my cheeks bloom with heat, and wanted to swat his thick head; I shrugged instead. "Just wait till you marry Claire, man. You'll feel the same."
I hid my smirk at Quil's embarrassed cough and winked discreetly at Seth. The kid looked handsome in his dark suit, his hair slicked back.
"Jake, what are you going to do now that you caught up with classes?" Seth asked, sticking his hands in his pockets.
"Don't know yet, man. Rose suggested I should study engineering."
During the long hours Rosalie and I worked on renovating the Porsche Carrera until it shined like new, we shot the breeze and talked about many things, including her past and her days at the University.
She had implied I had aptitude for those things, but frankly I didn't quite believe it.
Seth shot me a sympathetic look and groaned. "Guess Rosalie would think that. You said she was the one who told you about the Fermi paradox, right?"
"Yep." I looked out at the window. That information was the thing I used to chat up Johnny so he would trust me, and I could finally find out who was the girl in the meadow.
"What about you?" I said, looking at Seth. "What do you want to do?"
"Haven't given it much thought, what with worrying over Leah."
"She's busy with her twins, huh?"
"I swear those kids will be shifters one day, they bawl on and on! They look wrinkled and odd, but Paul loves them. Leah and Paul? They are nuts over the boys." Seth mumbled to himself, "Hope she names one after me."
"She might, Seth," Quil said, having finished his third sandwich.
"Paul is constantly in the house. He's kind of annoying, mostly on weekends."
"Fine." I glanced at my watch, hoping the ceremony would be over and wouldn't stretch endlessly like the rest of the day had. "You can check with the guys and swap patrol duty so you can get out of the house on weekends."
Seth grinned at me. "Sure thing. I'll do that."
"That's good, just don't mention it." I knew Seth was trustworthy and wouldn't blabber about this special treatment.
I heard a soft knock on the door. "Are you presentable, Jake?"
"Come in, Rose."
Rosalie walked inside, her long gown swishing softly against the floor. She looked so pretty, it was easy to imagine her dressed up in the old-fashioned way she told me about.
I frowned, noticing what she was carrying under her arm.
She cocked her head at the door and smirked. "I come from Edward's room. The guys and Alice are driving my poor brother crazy. It would seem Edward is irritated with a certain wolf. He sends you his love, he said."
She handed me the big plushie, Kwolie. I squinted at the thin ribbon wrapped around his furry neck; there was a piece of paper attached. Guessed it was the kind he used to compose because it had those musical notes on the edge. I groaned at the huge words, written in his flowing handwriting. 'Naughty wolf'
Obviously my mate wasn't pleased at my thoughts. Quil jostled my elbow, snickering just like Seth, so I decided to get revenge.
I grabbed Kwolie. "Thanks, Rose. By the way, you don't have to smirk so much, you know."
"Sorry, wolf. You and Edward strike me as funny sometimes."
I hefted the plushie and fished the pen out of my pocket. Biting my lip, I wrote my answer. 'Not funny, vamp!'
When I waved Kwolie at her, Rose shook her head. She didn't relent, even when I swung Kwolie's cute ears at her.
Grinning broadly, I handed it to Seth. "Would you give this to Cullen, man?"
"Sure, Jake." Seth grabbed Kwolie and turned to Quil. "Wanna go with me? Let's pester Edward for a while."
"Sure thing, Seth."
My friends left and Rosalie made to leave the room, but I held up my hand. "Wait, Rose. Could I ask you a favor?"
She eyed me sharply. "If it's about my custom-made torque wrench you've been eyeing, the answer's no. You lost my angle wrench that time you and Edward frolicked in the woods."
"No, it's about the Porsche." I scuffed my shoes against the floor, looking out the window at the woods. "Could you lend it to us for our trip up north?"
"Of course. I'm going to be busy anyway." She smiled briefly. "Leah needs my help with the twins. She needs someone that knows how to handle babies."
She stepped towards me and touched my shoulder. "Remember I said you own a substantial part of the car. Just make sure you take a picture of Edward driving."
She nudged my elbow and grinned wickedly. "That's why you want it, right?"
I turned aside, vainly trying to hide my blush. "Well, maybe."
"It was a pleasure working with you on the car, Jake," she said, walking towards the door.
I stepped towards Rose and wrapped my arms around her. "Thanks for everything, Rosalie."
There were so many things I wanted to tell her. She was great at being a friend and big sister; I had no doubt she would have been a great mother. Didn't want to make her sad, though, so I said a bit lamely, "You'll teach Leah lots because you're great like that."
Rosalie hugged me tight, and if I closed my eyes it could have been my mother's arms around me.
"You're great too, Jacob," she whispered. "Your coming here brought happiness to Edward… and me."
Edward did not invite any other coven to the wedding, mindful of their prejudices. I sent invitations to my friends and dad. Phoned Rachel and Rebecca, but they were too busy to attend.
The setting was simple. Just a few tables on the lawn for the food Emily and Esme had prepared. I smiled at Esme, noting the way she glowed with pride at seeing her son getting married. Knew how much she had enjoyed the recipes Emily brought with her. I couldn't wait to taste the result of Esme's skill and Emily's homecooked flavor.
I had peeked in the kitchen now and then, telling them I was checking out what they were doing while taking the chance to grab bites of the delicious food until Emily caught on. She glared at me, her arms akimbo as she shooed me away from their domain.
I sighed when I saw the empty chairs next to Sam. Felt keenly the absence of Leah and Paul. They couldn't come because she had given birth recently; though the delivery went smoothly and without complications, Leah had to take care not to exert herself.
Nodded at Doc Cullen, who sat beside Esme and held her hand. I'd never forget the way he cared for me, I just hoped I could make his son happy.
Dad sat in front of the pack, looking very neat in his black jacket and tie. Bowing towards him, I whispered my love in Quileute, but then Quil nudged my shoulder.
"Pay attention, man," he said in a stage whisper.
Rolling my eyes, I glanced towards Rosalie's hair, shining in the afternoon light. She looked elegant with her face framed by golden braids, next to her hulking husband.
Alice tapped her shoe impatiently against the floor next to Jasper. She didn't seem very happy at Edward, who had put down his foot and nipped in the bud her attempt to decorate in grand style. He knew my preferences and wanted to honor them.
I insisted on simplicity, knowing that if the ceremony was magnificent it would invariably remind him of the other wedding. Didn't want those memories to haunt him.
Seth beamed at me and I waved back. Despite his inexperience, one day the kid could well become the Alpha, just like Quil behind me, Leah or Paul. The Alpha's responsibility was discharged with heart and mind, not just a big body.
The celebrant finished speaking and my sight was relentlessly drawn to Edward, as it would always be as long as I lived. My Cullen looked delicious in his black tuxedo which complimented the alabaster skin I yearned to touch. The striking planes of his cheeks framed the wicked grin he directed at me, promising adventures in and out of bed. His ruffled hair, sticking every which way, begged for the touch of my fingers and his eyes, lovely in any color of the rainbow, shined with joy as he looked at me.
We said our vows in the presence of family and friends, cherished in the warmth and love coming from so different people.
"How long will it take, Edward?" I tapped my foot on the floor at the rhythm of the rock song coming from the loudspeakers I had installed.
"Hours. We'll go through Olympic National Park to Port Angeles and then take the ferry to Victoria on Vancouver Island." He shot me a grin as his hand lazily swung the wheel. "Drive this way and that, enjoy the hunting and make love under the moon. How does it sound, Jacob?"
"Fine, man, just fine." I beamed at him and nudged his elbow. Loved the Porsche because it was small and we were so close. "Saw you talking to dad."
"Well, Billy wanted me to be... gentle with you," Edward sneered. "He is under the mistaken impression that you are a virgin."
"Oh God!" I hid my face on his shoulder, curling on my side. "This is embarrassing."
"Don't worry, Jacob. I didn't tell Billy about the time I fucked you over the hood of this car."
My arousal throbbed at this words and I looked up at him. "You spent half an hour discussing this?"
"No, Billy reminisced about your fishing trips. He spoke about legends, too." Edward sighed. "He started telling me about the wolf's trail, but then Alice came up and interrupted us. So, what is it all about?"
"Actually, dad has told me many versions through the years. The one I like the most is modified from the Cherokee." I took a deep breath. "When the world was young, the sky held few stars. People mainly ate corn then. They prepared dried corn to make corn meal which they stored in baskets."
"One day, an old man and his wife found that something had gotten in their cornmeal during the night. They saw prints on the ground, along with scattered cornmeal. They were so big they knew this wasn't a dog, but a wolf. The people of the village thought it was a spirit wolf from another world. They wanted to scare the wolf away by making noises with drums and rattles, so the people hid around the place where they kept the cornmeal."
"My wolf wouldn't be sated just with cornmeal," Edward said fondly.
I nudged his ribs. "Hush, Ed. Lemme finish. Near dawn, they heard an odd sound, like a flock of birds flying at once. They looked up to the sky and saw a giant wolf swooping down towards them. He landed near the baskets and began wolfing down the cornmeal."
"Reminds me of you when you're eating, Jacob."
I glared at him and tilted up my chin to lick a stripe of his neck until I reached his ear. I nodded in satisfaction at the shudder that went through his body.
"The people made loud noises with their drums and rattles which scared the wolf. He ran to the top of a hill and leaped into the sky, food spilling out from his jaws. He created a path across the sky made of the cornmeal that escaped his jaws, and each grain of cornmeal became a star."
I leaned towards him and kissed his cheek. "That is how the Milky Way came to be."
The woods passed us by in a blur and we didn't say anything for a while, enjoying the comfortable silence.
With the top down, the wind blew over the window and played havoc with Edward's hair; a breathtaking sight which was framed by the Pacific Ocean just below the highway. I leaned towards him and brushed my fingers through his soft locks before opening the glove compartment to take out the camera.
Edward groaned. "Not again, Jacob."
I smiled at him while I shot his picture. "What can I say, dusk looks good on you."
In the twilight, his bronze hair merged with the shadows, the lighter streaks gleaming like threads of molten metal which lent him a striking appearance.
"Jacob, there's something I have to say."
I glanced at him; Edward was looking straight into the highway, but the way he worried his bottom lip told me he felt guilty.
"What is it, Edward?"
"I've been kind of rough with you in our lovemaking."
"Uh-huh. What about it?"
"It's just that you were sad after you visited the cemetery; I thought passionate love would help you to become your usual cheerful self."
"So you wanted to fuck the sadness out of me?"
Edward groaned. "No… yes. I don't know. I'm sorry if I hurt you."
I leaned on his shoulder, rubbing my cheek against the soft leather jacket. "You didn't, man. It was pretty good. Remember when we drove to our date in Portland? I told you I wanted your good and bad side. Well, that goes for your soft and passionate side, too."
"You have certainly proved you spoke the truth, Kwolie."
Edward's words, the tenderness in his gaze and the remembrance of the rough fucking over the car had me hard as a rock. I pressed my palm against my bulge and sighed regretfully. "I made a mistake, Edward. Should've asked Carlisle to lend us his car."
"Because the Mercedes is big. The Porsche is too small to fuck in; too narrow to have you ride my lap, writhing on my cock."
I felt his shiver through the thick jacket, and just to make sure I made my point clear, I slid my hand under his pants and boxers, warm fingers teasing his dick until I swirled my thumb over his slit, smiling at the moisture.
"Wet already?" I said with a leer. "I could make you come just from bouncing you up and down on my lap."
The Porsche swerved violently and I reached my hand out to steady the wheel. "Careful, man. If we do something to this car, Rosalie will kill us."
He stared intently at the road and pushed the brake pedal down hard.
"What are you doing, man?" I said in feigned innocence while I rubbed his dick.
"There's a field up ahead and I detect no one nearby." Edward turned to look at me, his eyes darkening fast. "The road is deserted and we are horny. What do you think, wolf?"
"I like the way you think." I rubbed my thumb along the crown of his dick, and his hips bucked up into my fist.
He stopped by the shoulder of the road and I opened the car door, stepping out to run towards the field. The stars were bright above. I felt the cool breeze coming from the woods as I lowered the zipper of my pants and toed off my loafers. I grappled with the buttons of my shirt before cold arms enveloped me, his hand caressing my flanks as I undid the buttons.
His fingers did the rest. I lifted my arms, allowing him to pull my shirt off my torso. With a lazy flick of his wrist, Edward threw it to the ground. Meanwhile, I pulled my pants and briefs down my legs, grabbing onto his shoulders as I slipped them off my feet.
I rubbed my cock and looked for a flat spot. Gazed towards the car and found a blanket in that direction which Edward had apparently pulled out from the trunk. Turned towards him to undress him, but found that Edward had already taken off his clothes.
"Spoilsport," I muttered, and licked my lips at the sight of his jutting prick, the cockhead glimmering with his juices under the moonlight.
"Just because I saved us time?"
"Nope, because half the fun is getting you out of your expensive clothes."
I laid myself down lengthwise on the blanket and spread my legs.
"Jacob, you are a delightful sight."
Sprawled on the ground, I fished around for my pants until I found them near a jagged rock. I balled them up and put them under my neck.
"Resourceful wolf," Edward said shakily.
I gazed down at my throbbing cock and then at Edward. Wished I possessed the wolf's night eyesight so I could enjoy the sharp vision of his pale chest and small nipples that begged to be tweaked, my mouth watering at the thick cock bobbing in the breeze.
Edward bent down to retrieve the bottle of lube from his jacket. He shook his head and threw it at me. Twisting my torso, I flexed my arm lengthwise to catch it and then fumbled with the stubborn cap before upending the contents onto my palm. I squirmed at the feeling of the cold, thick liquid.
My cock glistened under the moonlight after I spread the lube over the throbbing shaft. Edward whimpered low in his throat and knelt, scooting towards me on his knees.
He crouched over me and lowered his body, gripping my shoulders as he moved his hips so his hole hovered over my dick. My slick fingers probed his opening but he swatted my hand.
"I want to feel it for days," he said in a hoarse whisper.
"Want my cock to open you up? Want to ride me bare, skin on skin?" I held the base of my cock between my thumb and fingers, directing it like a blunt screwdriver to prod his crack with it, and rolled my hips to spread lube around his rim with the cockhead.
"Crouch over my dick," I growled. The short hairs at the nape of my neck stood on end as my wolf rose to the fore. "Spread your ass for me. Lemme see how needy you are."
Edward grunted and spread his cheeks with his hands. My cock teased his crack, nestling in the crease of his buttocks as I wiggled under him, rubbing the cockhead fleetingly over his entrance.
I smacked my lips at the scent of his musk which combined with the dank smell of the wet forest wafting through the breeze.
"Jake, come on! I need your cock," he said, trying to impale himself, but my hands gripped his hips, keeping him in place.
"Might keep you like this for a while, or make you come on my fingers alone." My thumb traced a path on the skin between his buttocks up to his heavy balls, touching the base of his dick before returning to the entrance. I sank my slick thumb into his hole, groaning when he clenched hungrily around it. I stabbed it inside until it sunk to the knuckle, rubbing my calloused pad around his walls. I smirked at the needy moan I coaxed from him and slowly pulled back my thumb.
"If you don't pound me right now, you fucking wolf, I'll hold you so tight you won't be able to move, and ride your damned cock myself!" he snarled.
"Sink on it, Ed!" I sat up and pulled him down, thrusting up my hips so my dick breached him until it sunk midshaft.
Grabbing his waist, I gazed at his face, looking for signs of pain.
"You're thick, wolf," he groaned and rolled his hips, squeezing around me.
"And you're tight!" I thrust up my hips and slid inside until I bottomed out, his buttocks rubbing my groin. I leaned back on the blanket and raised my knees, cradling his body between my thighs. "Ride me, Edward!"
His hands firmly grasping my shoulders, he looked into my eyes. "I love you."
It just killed me when Edward said that. Shivered all over and arched my back, wanting to map his insides, to brand him as mine. Edward rode me leisurely, thighs opened wide and hamstrings strained with the effort of moving up and down. Clenching my dick on its way out, relaxing when he lowered himself.
My hands roamed over his chest, pinching his hard nubs between my fingers until they stood proud. Jabbed my dick inside, watching his pale cock bobbing around, the crown so wet with precome that it drooled down from the slit to my abs.
Our lovemaking was tender and slow. We kept silent, grunting every now and then; the sounds escaped into the lonely night and mixed with the hooting of the owls and the rustling of the trees.
I lost passage of time, enraptured by the cold tightness which encased my girth. I looked up at the passing clouds that ran their fleeting race across the face of the moon, and gazed at the pale god who held me in his grip.
My fingers traced patterns on his chest which only I could decipher. Edward's perfect face and body were framed by the stars above as he impaled himself again and again.
I had gone up to heaven and finally met my fallen angel.
How much time we spent like this, I didn't know. Edward, the field in the middle of nowhere, the lonely trees and his body; it was all I saw, all I needed.
I could swear I felt his soul inside as he gave me his body.
He started bouncing up and down as I glanced up, noticing a break in the clouds. A sliver of moonlight fell on his face but I was distracted by his gleaming cock which bobbed around. I wrapped my fingers around the stiff girth and tugged it around like a pliant gearshift. My hips arched off the ground as I pumped his dick with my fist.
Nearing his climax, Edward rode me hard, his thighs flexing as his walls clenched around me.
The friction inside him and my hand around his dick made him come. He squeezed my dick so tight it hurt a bit, and thick ropes of come shot all over my chest, reaching up to my neck.
I jabbed my dick inside, hoping to ride his climax to achieve mine. Grunting at the tightness, the exquisite friction around my cockhead was too much and I finally came.
Edward lay atop me for a while, panting harshly. Then he rose on his knees, my softened cock slipping out of his body.
I reached my hand beneath my neck and pulled out the balled-up shirt to wipe my dick, wincing at the soreness.
"Come here." I said, cocking my head at the spot beside me. Edward heaved himself up and then settled by my side.
"Open up," I said huskily, hauling his knee upwards. He raised his thigh and I used my shirt to wipe off the come which was dripping from his swollen hole.
Edward groaned as I rubbed his rim tenderly, leaning down to kiss the hollow of his collarbone. "I love you so much, Edward Cullen."
"I know, Jacob." He looped his fingers around the nape of my neck and pulled me towards him. "I know it in my bones; I felt silly during our vows."
"What the hell?" I nudged his chest and then laid on my back. "So the ceremony was a farce to you?"
"Not at all, silly wolf!" He nestled his head on my shoulder and carded his fingers through my hair which made me huff in contentment. "Do you remember the time we kissed, just before rushing out to find out what Kiepel wanted?"
"I know you made a vow to yourself," Edward whispered softly. "It was beautiful and solemn. I felt joined to your soul, if that makes sense. I knew nothing could happen to us because you made me believe it."
"Of course it makes sense, Edward, because it's what I've felt for a long time," I said slowly.
We laid under the stars, watching clouds race across the sky.
I felt sated, and tired. Yawning widely, I noticed that Edward was staring at me.
"The soft starlight, and me riding your lap," he said wonderingly. "It's just like in your dream."
"Which dream? The one you watched when you were jealous?"
"Yes. I'm glad my fate in real life was different than in your dream," he said with a smile.
"I barely remember." I covered my mouth with my hand to hide another yawn.
"After we had sex in your dream, I turned into a beam of light and shot up into the sky." He raised his arm. "I remember the funny way the beam pulsed."
I leaned towards him so my brow touched his neck. "Really?"
"The beam was brighter in spots which pulsed; it was like a giant, invisible animal was climbing on the beam to reach heaven." He ruffled my hair and sighed. "It reminds me of your legend about the wolf that created the Milky Way."
"Oh." My lids felt heavy and I wiggled closer to lay my head on his chest, snuggling comfortably against him.
"That pattern in your dream also reminds of the way you walk in the forest in your wolf form. Your hind paws step precisely onto the prints left by your forepaws."
I closed my eyes and drifted asleep, lulled by his soothing voice and his scent nearby.
I strode along the frontier between dreams and consciousness, and things flashed randomly across my mind as it made seemingly random connections:
Edward's words about watching my dream made me recall the time when I had the videoconference with Johnny Davenport to get acquainted. He had a photo of the Arecibo radio telescope on the wall. Come to think of it, Kiepel had the same one in one of his computers.
The radio telescope received signals from deep inside the Milky Way, which was the Ghost Road created by the wolf as he found the route into heaven in the legend of the wolf's trail. Q'wati himself told me about it in the vision I had when they shot me. 'Follow the wolf's trail, pup,' he said. Thus, the trail led into the myriad stars of the Milky Way. But what could he have meant by that?
The Silver wolf, Q'wati, insisted that all life would end if I failed. It wasn't really so, though, just us magical beings. People with different abilities like Seth, the kid who was so curious about the Fermi paradox. Rose told me it meant there was no sign of life coming from the stars. No one there to talk with us; no one there who wanted to talk with us, she'd joked once. They'd rather keep their silence and watch us.
So the radio telescope remained mute; the Arecibo bowl which was on the screen Kiepel glanced at when he said the poachers worked for two masters. Kiepel said the people that designed the virus were advanced and wanted to wipe out all magical beings in the world.
Why were there no aliens visiting? Seth would love to meet them.
I felt protective towards the kid; without me to guard him against predatory leeches, Seth would have a rough time. Though he poked fun at my laws of survival which were true. Werewolves were put on this Earth to keep balance between predators and prey. Wild predators would wreak havoc with the prey and die when their prey became extinct, unless the predators could cross the sky and leap to other stars like the wolf that created the Milky Way. They wouldn't succeed though, if the people on other stars were protected by magical werewolves like us. Predators would have it tough coming here, unless they beat the competition first as is the predator's way. I had my Edward to protect me, though. He was strong and invulnerable unless he was writhing on the ground; his eyes hurting like hell because of the disease the poacher infected him with.
My Edward who rode my lap and then shot up to the sky like the wolf that created the Ghost Road, the galaxy full of predators watching us.
"Jacob, wake up, wake up!" Edward jostled me awake. I winced at his cold hands gripping tightly my shoulders.
"Your thoughts, Jake. Your thoughts have given me the key to everything!"
"What do you mean?" I blinked and opened my eyes, looking blearily at Edward, who was shivering. I shook my head, trying to recall my jumbled thoughts, but gave up after a few seconds because only wisps of the connections remained.
He stood up and picked up his clothes, dressing fast while I followed suit. Shrugging, I balled the shirt with wet spots and didn't put it on. Felt hot anyway.
We walked to the car and Edward drove us away, ignoring my puzzled look for a while.
"It all makes sense," he said after a truck passed us. "Your mind put the puzzles together in that lucid state between being awake and asleep. Don't you remember what you were thinking?"
"Parts of it. Q'wati mentioned the wolf's trail. He said that all life would perish because of my choice," I said, and found that talking about it with Edward helped me recall the thoughts I had had when I was falling asleep. "But Carlisle said the disease would only kill vampires and shifters."
"You forget part of your train of thought, Jacob. Kiepel was angry at the fact that all people with magical ability would die. He also hinted that the poachers worked for two masters, not only the Volturi."
"Remember how he scoffed at us?" I growled. "He said his idea was too farfetched and then glanced at the screen which had..."
"I know what you saw. That damned radio telescope in Arecibo."
"Why are you angry at it?" I raised my eyebrow at him.
"Because it reminds me when I thought you and John Davenport…" he snarled.
I put my fingers on his lips.
"I wasn't ever interested in him, Edward. You are the only one in my heart."
"The radio telescope, though. Johnny told me they've spent years listening to radio signals coming from deep space and got nothing."
"Which brings us to the Fermi paradox," Edward said, gripping tightly the wheel as the Porsche sped through the night. "Fermi wondered at the calculations he wrote on a napkin which showed that the galaxy teems with planets that support life. But if life is so widespread across the universe, there should be millions of advanced civilizations polluting the heavens with radio signals. We haven't found any signs of them, though. And if they are so advanced, why haven't they contacted us?"
"That's strange for sure."
"You thought about predators going rogue and destroying the herd. They would perish for lack of food unless they could spread across a new habitat: new woods, or a new star."
Edward's words sent a shiver racing up my spine. "So you think that no one up there has sent radio signals…"
"Because predators reach their world and snuff them out first," Edward said, staring at the highway.
"But why haven't they eliminated us?"
"Why indeed? What might be so different here than in other worlds? What if the only difference was…?"
"Magic!" I sat up on the car seat, glancing at the straight road ahead which seemed to stretch into infinity. "What if the difference that protects us is magic, like Q'wati that created us?"
"Exactly. You once said we were the stewards of the land, here to protect the people."
"Those beings in the stars up there wanted to eliminate us." I shuddered. "Remember what Sam said?"
"The time we were discussing what Kiepel wanted."
Edward furrowed his brow in thought and then said loudly, "If you want to get rid of dangerous wolves, you kill the Alpha and his betas! You get rid of the more capable wolves, which on this world means vampires and shifters. We are more powerful because of our abilities."
"The man in Leah's house," I said. "Edward, he smelled different. Not like a vampire or human, but alien."
"Like the man whose infected blood I drank." Edward pushed the pedal, and the beams of the headlights seemed so forlorn in the night, I had to snuggle closer to my vamp.
"The guy's mind was very strange." Edward paused, his lips pursed in a thin line. "I hadn't heard of the trick he pulled when he made me float like there was no gravity."
"Rose told us that Ben, the Egyptian vamp, can do that."
"But you forget something, Jacob. The man I met was no vampire because I could drink his blood."
"He infected you. The man truly wanted to wipe us out, vamps and wolves."
"Because the world would be defenseless then. It would become a silent prey to be devoured by predators up there."
"And life here would end, just like Q'wati told me," I said. "It was never just about us."
"There's another thing. Alice."
"What about the pixie?"
"She didn't have a vision of the virus spreading and killing us."
"Because we stopped it."
"You don't know her powers as well as I do, Jacob. Alice has visions when people take decisions that might threaten us. Months ago, she told me she couldn't see you because shapeshifters were members of another species."
"The pixie is wrong!" I growled, clutching Edward's arm. "We're as human as you!"
"Exactly, Kwolie. You will remember that Alice saw Leah's child in danger," Edward said softly. "But if these people aren't human, they could decide whatever the hell they wanted because they would be hidden from Alice's powers."
"My God! You put the pieces together very well." I felt a sliver of fear run through my spine.
"I'm only putting together the ideas that were in your mind during your lucid dreaming, Jacob," he said.
"Alice didn't see Leah's other child, though."
"Because her other son will turn out to be a shifter like his parents," he said. "That's the reason."
Edward drove in silence as we approached the city. He left the freeway and took us to a hotel. As he was parking the Porsche, he turned to me. "Your laws of survival are true, Jacob. We must hold the balance; keep the people safe from outside meddlers until we grow stronger than those predators."
"We'll have to contact Kiepel and get his help." I nodded. "We will protect them."
Vancouver Island, British Columbia
Two days later
I stalked towards the vampire, guided by his unique scent. He stood on the open by the copse of pines, his lips stained with the blood of his prey. He fixed his eyes on me as if he knew what awaited him.
Moonlight limned his striking features, stamping them in my mind. My footpads trod softly upon the loam of this northern soil, not far from that beach where my dreams had broken until Edward's love made them whole.
This man had the power to weave new dreams out of hope. His lips were nectar I would never tire of drinking, and in the shelter of his strong arms I found solace and love. His golden eyes, which sometimes held green speckles by the light of the spring sun, hinted at eternity.
Stopped in front of him and noticed a reflection in his eyes. It was the strong wolf, wrought out of earth and woods, fashioned out of chaos and given life to walk on this world. I stepped towards my love and shifted, and I saw a proud Quileute mirrored in his eyes.
"I see you had good hunting, Cullen."
"Just like you, Jake." He wiped a smear of blood from my lips. I leaned closer and cupped his chin between my fingers.
We kissed in the silent night under the scattered light of the Ghost Road.
Forever my mate. The wolf huffed, as the instincts that ran deep through my blood assured me that Q'wati revealed a true vision of the future; ahead of us stretched the endless road that would take us to the stars.
I lifted up Edward's chin so he gazed up at the Milky Way. Drinking the sight of his starlit face, I said, "I've been thinking, Edward. We live forever, and that means we can easily brave the chasm that separates the stars when the time comes to do so. We will become shepherds of the people under different suns. The day will come when we'll sail between the suns as easily as our ancestors crossed the seas from opposite sides of the world to settle here. As long as we keep the balance."
"You paint a long road ahead, Jake. It's bound to get dangerous and boring sometimes."
"Would you have it any other way, Cullen?" I caressed his cheek. "You are a hero, you know."
"You make me feel like one."
"Because you've always been so." I laid my cheek next to his and gazed up at the silent stars which pulsed brightly, promising danger, and threats, and adventure.
I wrapped my arms around him. "I won't ever let you go, Edward. You're mine for as long as I live."
"And you are mine, wolf. Mine to cherish and love." Edward's fingers touched my lips. He made me feel small, vulnerable, and powerful. All the things I was and could ever be, he brought it to the surface with his passion.
His thumbs caressed my cheeks and I drank the sight of my beloved. The bright pinpoints of the stars above glimmered in his eyes. It was fitting, for Edward held my world in his hands as he said, "Your warmth is my endless summer, Jacob, and in the prison of your arms I've found the key to eternity."