Written by: Sunsetwing
A/N Thank you so much for Breath-of-twilight for including me again. Not only is she a fantastic beta, but she is a splendiferous friend.
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Stephenie Meyer is a goddess and she owns everything. No copyright infringement intended.
Halloween was a night when the dark seemed to be at its darkest, the shadows were longer and you walked a little faster to get into the light again. But on this particular Halloween night, something sinister was amongst the shadows.
On a quiet street on the outskirts of a sleepy little town, an eighteen year old girl was babysitting her neighbor's kids. Bella was an average high school girl if not a bit on the shy side. She had her fair share of friends, but her close ones were all home on this Halloween night.
Bella, who would be attending Northwestern in the spring, was trying to make some extra money before she left for school by babysitting while the neighbors were away at their annual costume party. She'd never been one to attend any kind of parties and neither were her friends.
She especially didn't like going out on this night in particular.
One year ago, on Halloween night, a girl named Maggie, who was living on their street, was killed walking back from a Halloween party. They'd discovered Maggie's body just a few feet from the back porch steps of her home. She'd been strangled and stabbed and had apparently died with a look of sheer terror on her pretty face. They never did find out who killed her. Some even said that it may have been someone in their neighborhood.
Bella's father, Charlie, was the town sheriff and after interviewing nearly everyone in a fifty mile radius, they were no closer to finding the killer than when they started.
Charlie was extremely overprotective after that. For months, he'd asked Bella to be home before dark. She wasn't allowed to go to the library or shopping out in town alone after sundown. As the months drew on, he relaxed a little, even though there was still a killer on the loose.
Bella thought he was a little irrational, but at the same time, she was scared of being out at night. Even before the murder she wasn't one to be caught out late. Her and her friends went to the occasional movie, but for the most part, she liked to be home.
She'd finally gotten the neighbor's kids, Jack and Sarah to bed. Both kids wanted to stay up late and watch scary movies, but Bella wasn't a big fan and had to draw the line when the movies started getting really gory.
It was close to ten, and she wasn't expecting the Walker's home until around two or three in the morning.
If Bella had been like the other girl's in her class she would've tried to sneak a boy in the house. There weren't any boys that had caught her eye, though, except for one.
Edward was the captain of the baseball team, class president, and all around nice guy. He'd been dating the same girl, Angela, since freshman year; and they'd finally broken up a few months ago. Bella didn't hang out in their crowd, and no one knew about the secret crush that she harbored for Edward. He was in almost all of her AP classes and she always tried to sit somewhere behind him so that he couldn't see her stealing glances when no one was looking.
Edward happened to live just down the street, and Bella knew that he and Angela would probably be attending the Halloween dance tonight. Angela had been steadfast in trying to get back together with Edward, and Bella knew that she, herself, didn't stand a snowball's chance in hell of getting his attention. She didn't want to think about how much she wished she was more like Angela. Maybe then Edward would notice her.
Bella turned down the living room lights and plopped down on the couch. There was a suspense movie marathon on and she liked the feeling suspenseful movies made her feel. It was feeling like you were running through the woods from a killer and being totally safe at the same time. The movie title had just flashed on the screen when there was a knock at the door.
Slowly creeping toward the door, she could see a silhouette through the curtain and debated whether or not to open the door. She wasn't expecting anyone and knew the Walker's might care if she invited someone over. As she was about to move away, she could hear a voice coming from the other side.
"I'm not sure if anyone can hear me, but I'm looking for Bella Swan. It's Edward Cullen. I heard she was here tonight."
Bella debated with herself about allowing him in for just a second before she wrenched the door open.
"Hi, Edward. What's up?"
"I actually wanted to see if I could talk to you for a few minutes. Would it be okay if I came in?"
Bella wasn't sure what to do, but decided that if she let this opportunity pass she may never get the chance again.
"Sure… come in."
Edward came in and hung his letterman jacket up on the coat rack. Noticing at the same time, both Edward and Bella realized that they were wearing matching long sleeved shirts and blue jeans. Smiling at each other, Bella gestured towards the living room, and when Edward moved toward the couch Bella locked the door behind him.
They'd both taken a seat when Edward huffed nervously.
"So… how're you?"
Bella smiled, secretly so excited that he was there with her and nervous, definitely nervous, too.
"I'm good… Edward, what're you doing here?"
"You just get right to the point, don't you? Well… ah… I was actually coming by to see if you wanted to hang out. I'm mean… tonight. I really have been wanting to hang out with you and I just haven't had a chance to stop by your house. Then, with sports and everything this was my first opportunity, and I heard that you weren't going to the dance from Lauren and I just wanted to see you, so I came here."
Bella was utterly flabbergasted that he, Edward Cullen, would be coming here to see her and checking on what she was doing. Not only that, but he was totally nervous. The thought made her tingle inside, and she had to hold back flinging herself at him.
"You came to see me? Why?" Bella just had to know, because if she kept up on the train of thought that he actually wanted to be there with her she might actually get her hopes up for once in her life.
"Bella…I like you. I've actually liked you for a long time."
"But what about Angela?" Bella whispered.
"What about Angela, Bella? We've been over for a long time."
"But I thought you just broke up a few months ago."
"More like last year. Bella, we've been broken up since last October."
Bella could hardly believe her ears and couldn't seem to look him in the eye, much more focused on her hands. She was hoping she'd heard him correctly and this all wasn't some elaborate dream she was having. She could just feel tips of his fingers under her chin as he tipped her face towards his.
"And like I said, Bella, I've liked you for a long time. Maybe even before I got together with Angela. I just never got the courage to ask you out. You're quite intimidating."
Bella let out a loud guffaw, causing Edward's hand to drop to her knees.
"Me… intimidating… yeah right…"
"You are! You're so smart and beautiful, and I just feel like you're so much better than everyone, Bella. You're just so genuinely good; I didn't think I'd stand a chance."
Bella looked into his eyes and hoped that it was honesty she saw shining back at her. Before she could argue with him, he leaned forward and brushed his lips up against hers.
Tentatively, at first, Edward's tongue peeked out and licked at her bottom lip. Bella, so lost in the sublime feeling of his lips on hers, opened her mouth to let him in.
They were so wrapped up in kissing each other; Bella almost didn't hear the phone ringing. She backed away and smiled shyly up at Edward.
"I need to get that. I'll be right back."
Standing, Bella went to the side table where the phone was located.
"Hello, is someone there?" Bella could hear breathing on the other end of the line but no one was speaking.
"Look, if this is a prank call… very funny. You got me. Good night." Thinking it was probably just some kids playing a joke, Bella started to hang up the phone when she heard and odd, high pitched and distinctively male voice coming from the other end of the line.
"Do you like scary movies?"
"Who is this," Bella asked, feeling unease at the caller's question.
"Oh, come on now, Bella, I asked you a question first."
Bella felt the blood drain from her face. She knew she hadn't identified herself when she answered the phone but this caller definitely knew it was her.
"No, I don't like scary movies. Who is this?"
"Now what fun would that be if I told you who this was? Why don't we play a little game?"
Bella didn't want to indulge the idiot on the phone another minute and hung up, backing away towards the couch.
Walking right passed Edward, Bella darted towards the front windows to look out the curtains and onto the street. Someone had to be watching her. They had to be. How could they have possibly known she was at the Walker's? Only her father, her best friend Lauren, and now Edward knew where she was tonight.
The phone's shrill ring made her jump, and she grabbed at her chest, trying to quiet the loud beating of her heart.
Bella stared at the phone willing it to stop ringing as Edward sat staring at Bella. The phone rang five times before Bella couldn't stand it anymore and picked up the phone.
"Now that wasn't very nice to hang up on me, now was it, Bella?"
"Who is this?"
"Let's just say that I'm someone who wants to play with you, Bella. Is that good enough for you?"
Bella hung the phone up again and unplugged it from the wall. She didn't feel like playing anymore games for the night, and she certainly wasn't going to entertain some weirdo who got his rocks off on scaring people.
She moved to the front door to check the lock, and when she made sure it was secure she moved down the hall to check the back door. Once the exterior doors were checked and all the blinds were drawn, Bella still didn't feel comfortable. She thought about calling her dad to let him know about the phone calls, but decided against it knowing he probably had much more pressing matters to attend to.
She checked on the kids, both still sleeping soundly and made her was back downstairs to Edward.
"Who was that?" Edward asked.
"Prank call," was all Bella could answer.
"Hey, are you okay? You look a little freaked out."
Bella felt a little freaked out. Truly, it could be nothing but a prank call but something just felt off.
She sat back down next to Edward, letting him draw her close.
"It's okay, Bella. I won't let anything happen to you. I promise."
Bella looked into his eyes and felt a little better knowing she wasn't alone.
"I'd really like to kiss you again, Bella. Would that be okay with you?"
Bella nodded, and Edward was immediately on her.
The kiss turned almost frenzied as they lost themselves in each other. Bella was never the kind of girl you would expect to be very sexual, but right now, here with Edward, Bella was ready to give him anything he wanted just to keep him close.
The kiss shifted and Edward was between Bella's legs, grinding his self against her scorching hot center. Edward's hand played at the bottom of Bella's shirt, rubbing back and forth over the smooth skin underneath. Breaking away, Edward looked into her eyes to make sure he wasn't overstepping any boundaries. All he found there was lust and acceptance.
Edward hadn't come there to get something like this from Bella. He was actually quite surprised at how sexual she felt. She was so soft under his hands that he couldn't help but reach under her shirt, taking one of her perfect breasts into his hand. He nearly came in his pants a few minutes later when Bella started making these sexy little noises, nearly driving him wild.
Bella had never felt anything quite like Edward Cullen pressed into her most sensitive areas. Sure, she'd touched herself, plenty of times, but nothing could prepare her for how it was to have a man touching those same places. She may have been a virgin, but she realized that as soon as she could rectify that with Edward she would. At least, if that was even what he would eventually want from her.
Edward reluctantly started to pull away, hoping not to overstep with Bella. He really had liked her since they were in junior high and this was his opportunity to not screw things up.
Bella smiled up at him, "Would you like something to drink?"
"Sure," he smiled back at her.
Edward moved to the side, letting Bella up. Just as she passed the side table in the hallway her cell phone rang. Without looking at who was calling, Bella answered on the first ring.
"Lauren, what're you up to?"
"Lauren? Who's Lauren? Maybe she wants to play with me?"
"Who are you, and how did you get this number?"
"I just want to play with you, Bella."
"I don't want to play with you. Look, my father's the sheriff and I'm hanging up and calling him right now. I suggest you don't bother calling me back."
"Oh, Bella, sweet aren't you? I know who your father is, small town sheriff, small town mind. What I want to know is, how's he going to protect you when he's at the precinct and you're here. And me… well, I'm here… closer to you.
"You see, Bella, the last girl that didn't want to play with me, Maggie, things didn't turn out so well for her."
"Who are you and why are you bothering me? What could I have possibly done to get your attention?"
"Funny thing, Bella, it's what you don't do to get attention. I'm more of sit back and observe kinda person. I notice things. I notice the way you watch people but keep yourself at a distance. I know things about you that no one else probably knows… but me."
"But why do you care anything about me? Clearly I know you somehow…"
"Oh, Bella, you covet what's mine and now you're going to pay for it."
The line went dead and the silence was deafening. A long scrape against the window could be heard echoing through the house, causing Bella to nearly jump out of her skin. She was terrified beyond her wildest imagination, feeling like she was going to be sick. She knew that whoever had been calling was somewhere outside the house.
Bella quietly moved to the kitchen and grabbed a knife from the butcher block.
Bella's anxiety level shot through the roof and she stifled a scream when Edward entered the kitchen behind her.
She was standing there, a little in shock, still half paralyzed from fear and the other half from the fact that she didn't want Edward or the kids getting hurt from the obvious psycho running around outside.
"Bella, is everything okay?"
"I need to call my dad. I've been getting these prank calls and I…"
"Woah, Bella, what's going on? There's no one out there. Everything's okay, no one's going to hurt you."
Bella stopped and looked up at Edward. She wanted to revel in the fact that he was here in front of her, but she couldn't risk their safety. Bella held her hand up and immediately dialed her dad.
Turning away from Edward, Bella made sure the locks were secure again and as she waited for her dad to pick up as she made her way around the bottom floor checking if it was still safe.
"You've reached Chief Charles Swan; I'm unavailable to take your call right now. After the tone please leave a detailed message and I'll return your call as soon as possible… beeeeep."
"Dad, it's me. Please call my cell as soon as you can. It's an emergency."
Bella couldn't shake the sense of dread that came over her thinking about what the person on the phone had basically divulged to her. They had killed Maggie, and from the sounds of it, they intended to kill her. But why? What could they possibly have in common?
Bella nearly jumped out of her skin when she felt a hand grasp her shoulder.
Edward could sense that whatever was happening with the phone calls had Bella spooked. He just hoped that she'd let him help her.
Bella just kept thinking she needed to keep her mind focused on the caller. She shouldn't have even let Edward in the house, and now he was in as much danger as her.
The phone buzzed in her hand and without looking she picked up the phone.
"Dad, I'm so glad…"
"This isn't your dad, bitch. I'm done toying with you, now you're gonna pay, just like Maggie…"
The lights went out and Bella found herself gripping Edward tightly, dropping the phone to the floor.
"We need to get somewhere safe," Bella said, just barely holding back tears.
"What's going on, Bella? Who was on the phone?"
"They've been calling all night… threatening me… said I'd be just like Maggie," Bella barely choked out.
"Maggie who, Bella? Maggie from down the street?"
Bella nodded her head furiously. She was so terrified that she could barely control the quivers running through her body.
"Yyyesss… they never found her killer, Edward… never… oh god…what do they want with me?"
"I don't know, sweetie, but I won't leave you. I promise."
Edward started to walk slowly away from the door, still holding tightly to Bella.
"Are the kids asleep, Bella?"
Nodding, Bella clung to him, because her life just might depend on it.
"Okay, we're going to check and make sure the kids are still sleeping, and then we're going to try and get a hold of your dad one more time."
Bella simply agreed, knowing she absolutely had to get a hold of her dad.
They slowly made their way towards the kid's bedroom by way of the light from her cell. Inside the boys were sleeping soundly, oblivious to the terrors of the night.
Once they'd made sure the boys were safe, Edward moved them towards the living room. There, standing in the center of the picture window, was a figure clad in a black cloak. Nothing could be seen except the stark white mask covering their face.
Bella wasn't sure whether or not the person could see them or not, but she sure as hell could see it, and it scared the hell out of her.
"Calm down, baby, I don't think he can see us. Shhh, just keep still, Bella. I'm gonna get us through this, just don't move."
For a moment they thought they'd gone unnoticed until the white mask jerked in their direction, fixing its black gaze right on Bella and Edward. The figure jerked and took off towards the back of the house. Bella felt like her heart might seize as she remembered she'd checked the back door lock several times during the night.
Just to make sure, though, she extricated herself from Edward's grasp and walked slowly toward the back door. What she hadn't banked on was the pet door at the bottom as it swung silently back and forth.
Before Bella could even scream she heard a thump come from the living room.
She walked quickly and could see Edward's feet as she came around the corner. Bella was almost too scared to see what had happened, but peeked around to see if he was okay. It was so quiet that you could hear a pin drop. Seeing that no one was around, Bella quickly ran to Edward's side. He was so still and there was blood trickling down from his forehead.
Hands grasped Bella from behind and immediately covered her mouth. She noticed that her assailant was even wearing black gloves and their arms seemed to be fairly scrawny. Bella kicked and fought as hard as she could to get out of their grasp. Reaching back, trying to claw at her attacker's face, Bella managed to catch them by surprise and wiggled free from their grasp and began running towards the front door.
Bella could only think about keeping the attacker away from the kids and Edward. She briefly thought about how sad Charlie would be without her around. How could this be how her life was going to end?
Bella dodged through some trees and found a low grouping of bushes perfect to hide in. Diving underneath, Bella made it under and watched as a pair of black clad feet ran swiftly by. Bella could feel the blood seep out from the scrapes all over her skin from the sharp thorny bushes.
Thinking she'd finally managed to lead the attacker away long enough to go back and try to get help, Bella started to crawl her way on the forest floor back towards the road.
She was brought up short by her hair as someone yanked roughly on her long brown locks. Dropping to her knees, she could feel the blade of a knife pressed to her lower back.
"I wouldn't do that if I were you, bitch."
It was the same voice from the phone, but now they were so close she could almost hear a distinctively female tone to it.
"WWhhaaatttt, do you want? What could I have possibly done to you?"
"Oh, that is the question, now isn't it? As much fun as I'm having toying with you, Bella, I think it's time to move this little meeting to the next level. You see, you've coveted what's mine, Bella, just like Maggie did. Did you think no one would find out? Did you think that you were being that sneaky that no one would notice your little infatuation? Well guess what, I see it all, Bella, and just like Maggie, I won't stop until you're out of my way."
The masked person was so strong, and Bella was so confused at what they were even talking about and then the terrifying thought occurred to her, what if this was Angela? It certainly fit with what they were saying and their arms did feel more feminine than masculine.
They dropped to the forest floor, and Bella felt the hands let go of her as the person move to stand in front of her. The mask was yanked from their face and Angela's cold black eyes stared down at Bella.
"So, I see you're not too surprised. When did you figure out it was me?"
"Just now," Bella whispered.
"What? I can't hear you, did you say, just now?"
"See, and here I thought you were so smart. How is it that you seem totally oblivious to the fact that you've been trying to steal my man? Just like that bitch, Maggie, but I took care of her. Did a good job, too, if I don't say so myself. The only difference is, she died not knowing who killed her. I think that was appropriate considering she's be crushing after my man forever. That's right, Edward's mine still. He'll take me back as soon as he realizes the error of his ways. He broke up with me, but now, he'll need someone to console him what with you being killed and all."
Bella could feel the hot tears run down her cheeks and choked back a sob trying so hard not to show her fear. Angela leered down at her, and, without another word, lunged at Bella, wrapping her hands around Bella's thin neck.
"He's mine, Bella. Don't forget that. If you'd just kept away, all this could have been avoided. Now look at you, you're going to die…"
Bella immediately felt Angela's grip loosen, and her body slumped against Bella's. There, standing over both girls, was Edward, holding a large rock in both his hands. Bella was so relieved she jumped up and crashed into his protective embrace.
Chief Swan showed up to the scene a few seconds later, huffing and puffing after trying to have kept up with Edward. Charlie couldn't even imagine what the outcome of tonight could have been had Edward not gotten in touch with him.
There, on the forest floor, a killer was finally taken into to custody and the sleepy town they lived in could once again rest easy knowing the killer had finally been brought to justice.