A/N: Here is my long awaited next chapter. Sorry for the delay in putting it up. I don't intend to wait quite so long between chapters in the future. Buen Readingo!
I stood underneath the shower letting the hot water cascade down my head and body. My eyes were only half opened hardly registering my dark breasts and my white hair clinging to my chest. Instead my mind was a million miles away, and that's a conservative estimate. Since yesterday it had been like that, my mind seemingly against my will always coming back to the same thing.
Alice. Alice. Alice. Alice.
She's not normal, that much is clear. Glaringly obvious at this point. Last night I had decided to go through every interaction we've had and see if there was anything else unusual about her that I had missed. It turned out that yes, very much yes in fact some things about Alice were just off.
First her body temperature was off. Like really off. I remember when she hugged me and when she held my hand in the janitor's closet on Monday. I remember thinking that her hand was ice cold and thinking back on it the hug was also cold. If a person hugs you you expect to feel warmth not cold radiating off someone. With Alice it was quite literally the exact opposite of what you would expect.
I remembered yesterday in the school parking lot with my body against my car door, our bodies only inches apart. Her breath was in my face but instead of the warm breath from everyone her breath had been chilly, colder than the air around us. Which meant on the inside she was just as cold if the air that came out of her lungs was icy. When we stood so close I didn't feel heat radiating off of her at all. If she would have touched me I'm sure she would have been cool or cold to the touch.
So. Body temperature low enough to probably be considered clinically dead. Not normal. Definitely not normal. At all. Nope. Really really really not normal.
Ok I'm still freaking out a little bit.
Second was the eyes. First I thought her golden colored eyes were some weird genetic quirk… rare but still in the realm of 'normal' unlike my blood red eyes. Then I went and spent a couple of hours on the internet. Turns out human beings simply don't have eyes like that of a lion. It just doesn't happen.
Then there was the thing with the black eyes. I spent half the day trying to convince myself I had been seeing things. Oh it was a cloud that cast a shadow over her face at the right time that just made it seem like her eyes were turning black. I was stressed and dehydrated and seeing things. Someone slipped me some acid while I wasn't looking and I was just having a bad trip. At the rate I kept coming up with crazier and crazier theories to explain away what I saw I was going to end up telling myself that aliens were responsible for invading my brain.
When night arrived and the change came over me my denial stopped and I was finally able to just deal with the facts instead of having my brain twisting itself to pieces. I'd been stressed that night and had killed a rabbit with my bare hands and eaten half of it raw out there in the forest. The more stressed I get the more powerfully my wild hunter instincts seem to take over when night comes. After I'd ripped apart a few smaller game and took off running for an hour I was able to clear my head enough to make sense of everything in a rational way.
Ok so Alice could be a bully and somewhat… feral if she wanted to. Scary as hell to me on the daytime. I was now on the fence as to what to think of her – but I do know that I hated what she did to me in the parking lot by intimidating me into agreeing. It pissed me off that she could get away with that just because she got to me during the day otherwise there was no way I would have put up with her treating me like that. There was going to be a reckoning for what she did. But in the big picture of things all that was unimportant. There was something else I realized that was an infinitely bigger deal.
Alice was like me. Obviously not exactly like me but she was different. There were freaky things about her that set her apart from anyone else and might make one question if she was even human at all. Just like half the time I don't even know if I should think of myself as human anymore. There were other people like me who were… what? Genetic freaks? Born special? Freaking mutants like the X-Men?
I used to love X-Men comics when I was a kid. Not much of a surprise right? People born different who had to hide from a society that didn't understand and who were hated because they had been born different… and they made seem it cool. Me and my buddy Jake would blow all our money on comic books. It was our thing and I really liked it when taking a break from Pride and Prejudice and The Count of Montecristo. He used to tell me I was a mix of Wolverine and Nightcrawler and if I could find other people like me we could make a real life superhero team. He was a goofy bastard as a kid, cheeky brat. A good friend, my only friend.
God, Jake. I couldn't believe I'd been back for over a week and hadn't even thought about him. We used to be so close as kids, and him and his family were one of the only people who knew about my 'condition' and accepted me just the same. He never used to make fun of me, in fact he used to think it was really cool. Was Jake still in La Push living with his dad? Would we even still get along? … would he be different now, and not be ok with how I am anymore?
I grabbed my loofa squirted way too much shower gel on it and started scrubbing my body hard. He probably wouldn't be interested anyway being a teenager now and drowning in teenage hormones and probably off making an ass out of himself like most boys tended to do. Doubt he would want to hang out with the freaky girl who was his best friend in childhood. It stung to think that but it was most probably better that way. I already had enough 'friend' problems with Alice acting all crazy and twisting my arm so I'll spend the day with her.
Come to think of it… maybe she noticed something odd about me too? Is that why she is trying to strong arm me into being her 'friend'? Is she also curious about other people who are 'different'?
And what about her family… it didn't escape my notice that they all her siblings have similar eye color and seem… just a bit off. Maybe there is something to the genetics angle. But didn't Angela say they were all adopted?
Scrubbing my back – I'm flexible enough to do it without problems – I started to think of my plans for the day. The night before I'd thought of them as my 'battle plans' so let's go with that. Alice offered to drive us to Seattle I'll tell her to take us there. It will be hours of driving each way. It's important to burn up extra time because my 'master' plan was quite simple.
Try my best to dodge any and all questions and stall until nightfall… and then I can turn the tables on her and find out what I want to know.
If somehow she turns out to be too aggressive and/or dangerous then when night comes I can always use "that". I normally don't have much use for "it" but after yesterday in the parking lot I'm glad it's there. Alice had been quite scary yesterday. I'd be real silly to not remember and take that seriously. Having an answer to any potential aggression did a lot to put my mind at ease. Of course that meant playing the meek compliant 'friend' until nightfall.
The part I hate the most? My instincts do make me meek and compliant during the day. I hate that part of myself and I hate that I'm going to have to play it up until I have a chance to have a serious conversation with her from a position of power. Just gotta hope the distastefulness of it all turns out to be worth it.
As a nervous habit I ran my tongue along the length of my fangs and pressed it against the sharp pointy tips. The slight pain is a nervous tick and helps to focus me away from whatever is bothering me at the moment. Realizing I had been in the shower for a long time I grudgingly turned the water off and got out. I needed to get dolled up before my involuntary playdate.
I got out of the shower drying off quickly before putting on my clothes. Jeans, socks and a pair of boots that were the only somewhat 'stylish' piece of footwear I owned, and a long sleeved tight red turtleneck made up my outfit. I went through my routine of contacts, hiding my hair and ears under my precious wig, make up to make my face look normal and thin black leather gloves. After I was finished I put on a somewhat beat up and but comfortable black leather jacket.
I'm not one for vanity since the made-up person I saw in the mirror when I dressed up for the masses was not really me (covered face and wig saw to that), but even I could appreciate it when I looked good. Call me weird but I think there's something sexy about a girl in a turtleneck. I have unusual tastes and I make no apologies for it. Turtlenecks are hot.
Grabbing my brown leather satchel that doubles as a purse I made sure I had everything I needed in case there was some make up emergency I needed to touch up. After a second's consideration I made up my mind and went into my closet pulling out my sheathed hunting knife. I slipped it into my purse making sure I knew where it was and that I could get to it quickly. I really really hoped I wouldn't have any cause to use it during the day because I'm sure I'd muck it up if I needed to stab something (or someone) in self-defense. I also wished I could strap it to my hip instead of having it in my purse but that would be way too conspicuous.
I was stalling I knew so I took a deep breath, took one last look in the mirror and headed downstairs. My dad was sitting in front of the TV watching what looked like commentary about football (it's never enough to watch the games, he also has to watch endless hours of guys talking about the damn things). When he heard me he looked up and gave me a smile.
"You all ready Bells?" he said. He was beaming, looking like a proud father. It made me uneasy somehow.
"Yup," I said, popping my p. My dad didn't seem deterred.
"I'm really glad you're making new friends Bella. It's been too long since you were last close to anybody else," he said.
There's a good reason for that dad. Last time I tried it I got burned. I thought, but I didn't say anything.
He seemed to think it over as he took another swig of his beer. "You know I know Alice's dad, Carlisle. Great doctor, great with his patients. Met a couple of his kids too in passing they were all real polite, real nice kids. Alice sounded like a real sweet girl on the phone. Try to open up and not scare her away, give her a chance. I know you can be… uh standoffish with people. I don't blame ya but it might be time for you to start changing that," he said.
Even though my violent impulses are almost completely gone during the day I still felt like strangling him. He had NO idea what he was talking about. There are very , very good reasons I'm standoffish and my dad refuses to accept that it's what I want and that it's what is for the best no matter how many times I explain it to him. Plus, Alice is a nice girl? HA! She's a violent, dangerous stalker-y menace! Charlie did not have the first clue what he was talking about. The only reason I was spending the day with Alice is because I needed to find out more about her and I needed to make it clear (once night rolled around) that she couldn't push me around any way she wished.
"Sure dad," was all I said in a flat tone and went to the kitchen to snack on an organic tangerine.
He looked like he wanted to say something else, but I ignored him and eventually he went back to watching the television. I ate the small fruit even though I didn't really have an appetite. Glancing at the clock on the wall I saw that it was only two minutes until eleven. Despite having a plan of action I couldn't help but feel nervous. What did I even want anyway? I know to find out more about her. It was what I would do after I found out whatever I was going to find out that made me nervous. What was I going to do? I had no idea.
Also, there was also the slight chance that she might go all 'alpha scary bitch' like she did in the parking lot and rip my throat out. That was a concern too. Scary part was that I was only being a little bit sarcastic and part of me thought it might be a real concern.
Why did I sign up for this again?
I didn't have more time to second guess as at that moment came a polite three knocks on the front door. I took a deep breath to settle my nerves. It was show time.
As I pulled up to Bella's house I'll admit I was nervous. I had screwed up soooo bad the day before. And oh boy my family had not let me forget it. Rosalie had even suggested moving or killing Bella. I had to put my foot down then. Yeah I'd screwed up but they were really all overreacting.
Ok so… I hadn't expected her to refuse me at the end there. In fact I'd had a vision earlier telling me it would go off without a hitch and she would just agree right then and there. Of course it's not the first time a vision has not gone exactly as I had foreseen it but… it's usually when I see things a long ways off that things change, not something that will happen later in the afternoon. It had surprised me and I'd reacted on instinct. Aggressive. Domineering. Very vampire-like. No one got hurt but still… it was a bit troubling.
But not troubling enough that I wouldn't see Bella. Everyone in my family had either been skeptical or downright against me spending the day with her after my minor slip up. However Carlisle had not outright forbidden it so the rest of them could go pound sand if they didn't like it. Even Jasper had tried to talk me out of it but I wouldn't let even him stand in my way. I don't know how to explain it but this was something I just had to do.
Besides I need to make it up to Bella. I don't want to be the domineering type of vamp who lets their 'Alpha' instincts run rampant. It's very possible that I could browbeat Bella into being what I want and shape her exactly into what I wanted her to be. But I didn't want to do that even if the temptation and whispers of my vampire were there. Part of me felt it would blow up in my face. Part of me also had a feeling that Bella for herself would be a wonderful beautiful person if allowed to grow on her own. It would be a tragedy to spoil that.
Isn't it a little disturbing that those are the only reasons I wouldn't forcefully shape her into an obedient pet? If that's the instinct vampires have when dealing with humans then maybe it's a good thing we don't really befriend any of them. Or is it just a Bella thing that makes my vampire want to be forceful and dominate? It's just another thing along with my bloodlust that I need to keep in control. Joy.
If I didn't want to do the Alpha Mistress route then that meant I had to get Bella to like me and trust me. After yesterday's little show that's going to be a lot harder than before. I sighed in self-disappointment and frustration at letting my instincts get the better of me. At least she hadn't called to try and cancel again. That probably meant I had at least a chance to make a favorable second impression.
What would I have done if she had called and tried to cancel? That… doesn't really bear thinking about. Let's just say for all parties involved I'm glad that didn't happen.
Looking at the time I saw it was less than a minute before eleven. I got out of my car and walked to her front door feeling more than a little bit nervous. Why was this so important to me? I just didn't get it. Snippets from visions and a feeling I got from them just made this imperative but it was almost like a half-forgotten dream. Still I knew Bella was supposed to be someone important in my life. Determined to not screw things up anymore I raised my hand and gently knocked on the door.
I could hear the heartbeats of two people inside and one of them started moving towards the door. By her gait I could tell it was Bella. I had a big smile on my face that I didn't need to try and fake when she opened the door.
For a second I was taken aback as I looked at her. At school Bella always dressed the same way. Baggy sweaters and jackets in drab colors, old faded or baggy jeans, her face made up to be as plain as possible. It was like she did everything possible to not stand out and blend in by being as bland and boring as she could.
The Bella that stood in front of me looked completely different.
She wore newer, skintight dark Silvers (Jeans) that showed off shapely and surprisingly toned looking hips, legs and thighs. She wore a tight red turtleneck that hugged all her curves, and boy did she have curves. Her chest was modest but her breasts sat high and were beautifully shaped. Bella's normal full face make-up was accented by some simple eyeliner and subtle green eye shadow. Her leather gloves, boots and slightly battered black leather jacket gave her an edge that made her look kind of badass (which was funny given how meek – but stubborn – she was all the time). Her brown satchel should have clashed with everything but somehow she made it work and look like it belonged. On the whole she looked really, really good. It took me a few seconds to realize what I was doing.
Oh God – am I checking her out? I've been checking her out! Yeah she looks good but… bad Alice! DEFINATELLY not what we're here for.
I looked at her face a little bit worried that I'd been caught staring but instead I saw her checking me out with a slightly surprised and bewildered look on her face.
I guess she likes what she sees I thought not a little smugly with a smile curling on my lips.
I practically lived in expensive jeans and designer tops and jackets at school so I had decided to go for something a little different. I was wearing an ivory sweater dress of modest cut… but of course me being me I made sure it showcased my petite frame to the fullest. It was thick enough and long sleeved so I could forgo a jacket. A belt around my waist with black stockings and cute little booties completed my outfit along with an expensive little purse. I looked good and I felt warm with pleasure at seeing Bella's surprised and appreciative look.
Bella was a lot slower at recovering from her gawking than I was so when she finally got done checking me out and looked at my face I couldn't help but give her a knowing little smile (at least I contained a full-on smirk). She looked away shyly and I could feel the heat rising to her cheeks even if I couldn't see it underneath the face make-up.
Ok I had to give her a knowing full-on smirk then. There's only so much control you can expect a girl to have when faced with a situation like that. That seemed to frazzle her even more.
"Ready to go?" I asked, going for being as open and friendly as I could.
She hesitated a moment and then nodded carefully. She was just about to step out the door when her father came up behind her.
"Hello Alice. Nice to finally meet you. I've met your brothers Edward and Emmett but I've never met you before," he said, reaching past Bella and holding his hand out.
I shook his hand politely with a smile that said 'trust me, I'm innocent and dependable' on my face. "It's a pleasure to meet you Chief Swan. I've heard my dad say nothing but good things about you. You really don't mind that I'm taking Bella out for the day do you?" I asked, playing up my inherent cuteness.
Chief Swan scoffed at that, "No, I told you I think it's a wonderful idea. I made sure Bella here has some money. I hope the two of you have a wonderful time," he said beaming at both Bella and me. I had to try hard not to laugh at the slightly horrified look on Bella's face. I guess she didn't expect her dad to all chummy with me like that.
"Don't worry Chief Swan, I'll take good care of her," I said and winked at him playfully. The chief blushed and sputtered some goodbyes before going back into the house and leaving me alone outside with Bella. She gave me a strange look before heading towards my car without a word.
I was a little disappointed by her lack of reaction at seeing my smokin' hot yellow Porsche. She just opened the passenger door and got in. Walking at human speed I went around and got into the driver's side sending furtive glances at her every few seconds as I got in. She was staring straight ahead seemingly deep in thought and I found myself curious and a little nervous about what she might be thinking.
As I went to put the key in the ingition she finally opened her mouth and said what was on her mind.
"Where you just flirting with my dad?" she asked, sounding half bewildered, half angry and half horrified.
I couldn't help it, I laughed out loud. It was hilarious. How innocent could this girl be?
"Why? Are you jealous?" I asked, waggling my eyebrows.
"WHAT? No – how could you… I mean no way. How could you think that? I mean it's not like you're not pretty – I don't mean pretty like that, it's, um yea…" she paused for a moment. "The answer to your question is no," she said more or less firmly. It would have been more convincing if the embarrassment wasn't rolling off her in waves.
I realized something about Bella Swan then – she was adorably socially awkward.
Inside I grinned like the Cheshire cat. That was so cute. I was going to have so much fun with that.
Does that make me a bad person? Maybe. Bad vampire Alice, bad!
I turned the car on and peeled away from the driveway, earning a little squeak from the girl on my passenger side. I really hoped today went well. But even if it didn't I had a feeling it would at least prove itself to be entertaining.
A/N: (WARNING: Upcoming rant that has little to do with the story and you may or may not want to skip coming up; Feel free to not read it. It's all about my opinion on Twilight vampires).
I really don't like Twilight vampires. In fact I could almost say for certain that I hate them. Why? Because they are effectively invincible to human beings. Humans have literally no way to stop them and no way to be safe from them. It makes them infinitely more boring and difficult to write anything good about.
An extension of what I was saying about Alice is that all good characters, supernatural creatures, organizations, etc etc cannot be perfect or else they are horribly boring. Really going on a tangent here I'm going to use an odd example to talk about 'powers' and how they need to have clear limits and weaknesses; the X-Men. Who are the most compelling characters that have been popular for decades? The ones with clear limits and weaknesses. Rouge, her power is a curse even though it has the potential to make her insanely powerful. Wolverine is almost indestructible but he's not that much stronger than an average human, very much not invincible. Cyclops has brain damage and can't control his eye beams. Jean's powers are so volatile even her teammates are often scared of her. All of them can be stopped or countered by mere humans with enough intelligence and/or preparation.
Take the mutants that are not that popular or never stick around… I won't bore you with names most people don't know but they are usually insanely powerful ones with powers that don't have glaring weaknesses. That's because uberpoweful powers on a character are BORING.
Buffy vampires for example are way weaker than Twilight ones but they are much more fun to write about and read. A well educated and prepared human does stand a chance, though often not a great one. They have weaknesses, can't enter a home unless invited in, fire, sunlight, holy water, crosses, and pointy wood through the heart. A human fighting a vampire is at a horrible disadvantage but if they play things right they can at least get away or maybe even win.
Twilight vamps are like superman without kryptonite. What's the fucking point? They are invincible death machines that everyone is helpless to stop. Yes I get that other vampires and shapeshifters are a 'threat' to them but it doesn't change the fact that they prey on humans who can never, ever fight back. It's silly, makes no sense, when you think about it it throws half the rationale about vampire secrecy out the window. If vampires are essentially terminators with superspeed why don't they rule the planet? It's kind of ridiculous that they hide from humans as a species.
My guess? Twilight vamps were never meant to be a force human beings had to survive. They are just a magical plot device for a cheesy love story. Vampires don't actually have to be interesting they just have to stand in as the magical fairy people that Bella wants to join in the quest for the ultimate eternal romance. Thus they were poorly constructed and suck.
My Bella will at least have a snowball's chance to defend herself against a vampire (at night) even if she's still at a huge disadvantage. That is my way of dealing with overpowered vampires and actually making them interesting in the story.