Bella’s happily ever after lasted two days. This is Bella’s own account of what happened after Breaking Dawn, her growing understanding of her powers, her battle to remain with the man she loves, finding her place in her new family, and the ever-present threat of the Volturi.
New posting Chapter 55 - Postscript
Cold Gray Light
Please view the new trailer by Jesse Desplat it is brilliant.
Thank you so much Jesse!
This fantastic trailer was made for me by Marisa Wilson
Please view it is spine chillingly good
Thank you so much Marisia!!!
From the moment I walked through the door I could feel his eyes on me. Boring into me, owning me, watching even the minutest move I made.
I thought that I’d lose this intuition when I became a vampire. But in reality it had just got stronger along with everything else.
I thought for a moment about the one big change that my transformation had made, my thirst. Although I was still young, and the thirst for blood should be overwhelming, I had been able to handle it from the first moment I awoke in my new life. No one knew why that was. I could cope with human scents even up close, when I should have wanted to drink them dry. The scent caused me physical pain, an intense burning from my nostrils all down my throat, and feeling my throat squeezing tight with the dryness. But it was bearable. This was unusual for a new born. My kind usual manage this much control after a few years. But even with my self control the thirst was still there, the longing for something to put out the dryness.
My mind churned again. My mind could think of so many things at once. The dryness was always one of my thoughts, sometimes near the surface, then moving back into the background. I could keep all the thoughts in my mind -- juggling two, five, ten thoughts in parallel -- but never mixing them. Like watching ten TV channels at once. Another vampire trait.
Maybe I was just being paranoid. Maybe there was no one looking at me. I still hated attention just as I’d done as a human, I still shied away from it. I was just letting my imagination run away with me again. No one was looking at me. But I could hear his heartbeat six feet to my left, slightly behind where I was standing. He was sitting on a chair next to the loveseat. He was close enough to feel the warmth of his skin in the cool of the morning air. I could smell the strong scent of the skin pouch he wore round his neck. A smell that forced out every lesser smell from that part of the room, like a car headlamp blinding out a flashlight. It was not just the animal fur with its heavy notes that I could smell, but what was inside it. The herbs and berries that it contained, each type giving a new harmony to the smell. Some sharp, some sweet. Some I knew -- citrus, juniper, cinnamon -- some I had no words for.
Maybe he was just looking at Nessie like everyone else in the room. My four month old daughter was reciting a poem for her audience in her beautiful childish voice, complete with dramatic pauses and carefully characterized accents for the speeches. She was a very advanced four month old. She looked more like a small four year old, but she would have been counted as a genius in any preschool. This was because she was half vampire and half human, and of course could never be allowed in preschool. Her brown hair, with a tinge of bronze that came from Edward, fell down her back in beautiful curls. Her eyes were a warm milk chocolate color that had been mine when I was human, and were now excited by the attention she was receiving. Her complexion was pale with a healthy pink glow of excitement. We knew now that her rate of growth and progress would slow and she would be fully mature in another 6 and half years, and then live forever. We’d learned this from Nahuel only two days before. My dark worries of losing Nessie had vanished. We’d thought we would have to watch our daughter grow old and die in fifteen short years, and we would mourn her for ever.
I didn’t look to check if I was right about Nahuel and his staring. I had caught his eye only once that morning, when we came in and gave the usual greeting to our family and their two remaining guests.
I still didn’t understand why these guest were still here. Yes, I was grateful to them, especially him. So grateful it hurt. He had saved us all: my daughter, my husband, my vampire family, my wolf friends, and me. And he put himself and his father and his sisters in danger. How could I not be grateful to him. We all were.
I’d asked Edward twice why they had not left with the other guests after the standoff with the Volturi. The first time was after the celebrations when all the other guests had left and we had taken Nessie back to our cottage to sleep in her own bed. This was the first day that we’d met them, the first day of the stares. Edward had given his answer, saying Nahuel was so glad to know that a family like ours could exist. A family with a half vampire child, the only one Nahuel knew of that was not related to him, and a surviving mother. Nahuel’s mother died in child birth and so did the mothers of his half sisters.
It is rare to find a vampire who would want a physical relationship with a human woman, even rarer to find a women who survived such an encounter. Her life could end at any moment if he did not concentrate fully on keeping her alive. And what about the outcome of such an encounter? Mortals are not compatible with half vampire babies, the babies are so much stronger than the women. I had only survived thanks to the care given to me by my vampire family and because Edward changed me into a vampire as soon as the baby was out. The memories of this violent birth were now dimming for me. The vampire venom had mended the terrible damage and left me whole, strong, and beautiful.
According to Edward, Nahuel had spent his long life, over 150 years, thinking he must be evil to the core to have killed his mother. But seeing me set him free from his guilt. He now blamed his father for not caring for his mother as Edward had for me, and for not changing her when Nahuel ripped his way out of her.
The second time I’d asked Edward why Nahuel and his aunt (a full vampire) were still with us, Edward said that they wanted to learn more about our vegetarian lifestyle. This was how we liked to describe our abnormal hunting habits in the Cullen family. Unlike other vampires we only hunted animals, not humans. This gave us distinctive golden eyes which intrigued the normal red-eyed vampires. When I asked this second time, it was not what Edward had said that set me thinking but the way he said it. If I wasn’t his wife and didn’t know him so well I would not have noticed the slight tightening of his straight shoulders under his tan colored jumper, and that he was holding his perfect jaw a eighth of an inch higher than normal. He was lying to me.
Edward lied a lot. He had to. When you can read the minds of everyone in a mile radius then you have to lie to appear normal. You have to learn to ignore the thoughts most of the time. You have to answer only the questions people say out loud and not all the far-reaching ones they think in their heads but don’t dare ask. Edward also felt he must not betray confidences of those around him. It was not as though he could stop hearing thoughts if he wanted to, and not as if people could stop thinking when he was around, so he just didn’t pass these thoughts on. I was a shield which meant that he could not read my mind, not even when I was only human. Now that I was a vampire I had learned to remove my shield if I wanted, but I could only do so for a few moments at a time and even then it was exhausting work.
But why would he lie to me about why Nahuel and Huilen were still here? We had just made it through the worst danger imaginable: the whole of the Volturi forces lined up against us, the judges, jury and executioners of the vampire world. We had survived that, so what now? What was he covering up? Surely we had to have a break from peril sometime.
Maybe bad luck was something that I’d brought with me into this life. Since I met Edward as a human I had always had bad luck. My life before Edward, before my return to Forks to live with my Dad, Charlie, was a quiet life in the big city of Phoenix with my Mom, Renée. The memory of this former life was becoming hazy, almost a pre life to my human life, as if I was now in my third life, not my second. I’d had too much on my mind to sit down and think about it, though that was the only way my family said that I would remember it for the future. As I remembered it now, it was a happy but lonely time of looking after my hair-brained mother and being the adult in the relationship even though I was the child. She didn’t need to be looked after in a physical way but in an emotional one, helping her to organize and control her life. I was the one who made sure we went to the store when we needed groceries and that we went to the bank when the bills needed to be paid. In many ways you could say I was her keeper rather than her daughter. This role was taken by Phil, her husband of nearly three years.
I argued with myself that I had already brought my shield through to my vampire life along with my strange ability for self control. I was sure that I could not have brought anything else. I had left my clumsiness behind, which was a truly good thing. I now moved so fast and was so strong that if I was clumsy lots of things would get broken. Not just inanimate objects, but living things. Even people.
I looked over at Edward, to keep my eye from straying to Nahuel. His beauty never failed to amaze me. He was stunning. His eyes were a warm amber color. But this morning more like stone than liquid. Something was bugging him. No doubt he was hearing things he didn’t like. His face muscles twitched slightly and his teeth locked together noiselessly. His smile remained, a facade to keep the others away from his upset within. I had no idea what he had heard or who it was that was having these thoughts, but my mind turned to Nahuel again, though I didn’t let my eyes follow. Edward would tell me when it was right and certainly not in the middle of this gathering.
Edward applauded when Nessie came to the end of her poem, pride now on his face. I felt a jolt of joy at his pride. I was proud of her, naturally, and applauded loudly too. But to have him so in awe of her gave me such a feeling of belonging. I had, in the end, been able to give him something so worthwhile. A daughter, our miracle. It made up for the lack of balance in our relationship. He had given me everything: his love, his life, my new life, money, possessions, a home, a car, a family. But the one thing that that he had never imagined, that none of our vampire family had thought possible, came from me. She was a delight to them all, and especially Edward.
It was only as I turned away from Nessie’s performance that I noticed Alice was staring into thin air, her eyes out of focus, completely still. I knew she was seeing something. My sister’s ability to see into the future was enviable. It had made her top of the Volturi’s list for acquisitions. It was this ability that had saved the family and herself many times over. The future she saw was only one of the possible outcomes. If decisions that had been made were changed then what she saw would change.
“Demetri is coming,” she said simply in a clear chiming voice, not altering her stance at all. “Aro has decided. He will follow Carlisle to us.”
Carlisle was at her side in an instant. “But why?” he whispered. “Why now?”.
The image of the the Volturi tracker was instantly in my mind. It was not possible for anyone normal to run from Demetri. He had a gift for finding them. But this gift needed access to someone’s mind, and it was something I could block with my shield. As well as being a tracker, Demetri was a warrior, with centuries of experience working with the Volturi.
“But why, Alice?” he asked again.
Alice had gone back into her trance. This time it took her over a minute to come round. “He comes only to observe,” she said with a little relief in her voice. “Aro will order him to stay with us and just observe. He is to watch Nessie grow for Aro and to find out more about the wolves for Caius. He is to cause us no trouble. He will be ordered to hunt like us. Aro wants to see how this will change his character. He is report back regularly by letter. This order will be made at full council the day after tomorrow. He will arrive three days after that.”
She looked around the stunned room.
“Please look for more,” Carlisle urged her.
“Demetri will bring a note with him from Aro but they know that I can see what it says so you will be forewarned. Aro is staring at it so that I can read it...
My Dearest Friend Carlisle,
I am sending my dear one Demetri to visit you as an emissary. I feel that our last meeting left a rift between us which I want to close. I have asked Demetri to learn about your life style and your beloved granddaughter so that we may better understand each other in future.
I ask you to take Demetri into your hearts and your home, and to this end I will ask him to make himself useful to you and cause you no trouble. Please use him as a son.
Yours in friendship,
Carlisle looked aghast. “Is there more?” he said, shaking his head.
Her face returned to the distant mask, but seconds later disgust was clear on it. She came back to the present again shaking her head. “Uh, that is so gross”.
“I saw part of the inner council meeting that was only the family, no guard. It is so gross.” she said, hardly able to speak for revulsion. “Aro says he wishes to watch a half vampire child develop first hand. He says that he will order Demetri to try to father a child when he has returned from his visit. He laughs and says that he may have learned some restraint from us. The mother is to be the only human they trust, their administrator Gina. They will promise her immortality if she successfully gives birth, but she has no choice. If she says no, she’s lunch. He says it will be a great honor for Demetri to father a child to be brought up and studied in Volterra. Caius is against the idea, the decision will be put off until a later date... I can’t see further than that, I’m not attuned to them, I can’t see so far ahead into their futures, I can’t see if she will become pregnant or if they will kill her, it is many months away, it may change.”
There was stunned silence.
All the joy after the last successful encounter with the Volturi was gone.
Then the speculation started. Alice could see the event but not the motivation behind it. It boiled down to three simple questions: why this? why now? and why Demetri? A dozen answers to each question came from the gathered family. The most likely answer was that they wanted to catch us doing something against the rules as soon as possible, and Demetri can stand up for himself.
The others gave little thought to the planned baby. It was beyond the immediate worry and didn’t affect us personally. But my mind was on Gina and how I could help her. I had only just survived my own pregnancy and I had had good medical care and love from all my family. I felt cold, cold to the heart.
Had I started some new vampire fashion? Would lots of vampire males want to father children? And what of the vampire females, would they want to become stepmothers? I thought of the loss of human life. I thought of Gina.
I found myself a spot on the floor and sat there still, shocked, horrified.
The discussion went on for nearly an hour, until Carlisle looked at the clock and said that he had to go for his shift at the hospital.
He turned to our guests, “Nahuel, Huilen. It may be best if you were not here when Demetri comes to call. I do not wish to ask you to leave but for your own safety I must ask you to think about what you want to do. You know you have our thanks for what you have done for us, and I owe you for the safety of all my family. You are welcome here at any normal time.”
It was Huilen who spoke this time. She spoke simply in her heavy accent. “We will leave before he arrives.”
Carlisle smiled warmly at her. “That is for the best. We can visit you before long, and maybe meet Nahuel’s sisters if that is possible.”
The others continued to speculate after Carlisle had gone, Emmett debating with Jasper the possibility of beating Demetri in a fight. Jasper thought that if there were several of us it may be possible, but it would only bring the rest of the guard down on us, a battle which we would not win this time.
Alice touched me lightly on the arm, tutting at my pants and jumper combination. My favorite sister was never happy with my lack of fashion sense. But she could see the future, and would have known the day before about this particular lapse of mine. I thought to myself that I would suggest to her that she warns me in advance next time, so that I don’t disappoint her again.
“You know, I thought you would have learned a little by now Bella,” she chided quietly. “I will just have to take you back to your cottage and show you how to match up those pants myself. I didn’t spend weeks putting together your wardrobe for you to use it like this.”
That morning I must have really gotten under her skin. How could she care so much about fashion when she’d just given us the news about Demetri? Really. It made no sense.
I looked down at my outfit. It didn’t look that bad to me. I’d made sure that some of the threads in the jumper were exactly the same tone as the pants, but if it made her happy we could be home and back in a very short time. A few minutes out of the house would do me some good.
“Edward,” she chimed. “I’m taking Bella back to your cottage, can you look after Nessie by yourself?” The look on her face one of great effort.
He smiled warmly at her. “By myself? I don’t think that I will ever be allowed to look after Nessie by myself. She has too many fans for that.” He looked quizzically at her while he made his answer, as if they were having another inaudible conversation but failing to understand each other.
It was true. Most of the room were watching Nessie again, just waiting to see what she would do next, fascinated by her. Her Aunt Rose and Grandma Esme sat on the floor with her.
“We’ll see you soon,” Alice chimed again, wincing with effort, like a small child trying to remember a really difficult times table sum.
As soon as she said this I looked around the gathering to smile a normal goodbye. Then I saw him, Nahuel. He was staring at me. Staring at me with total adoration in his eyes as if I were the only thing he could see in the world. The only thing he had ever seen. Like a blind man seeing the sun for the first time.
Oh no... no please no, I screamed inside my head. My face turned from a smile to sheer dread, his calm face turning from adoration to puzzlement at my expression.
Edward stiffened beside me, but said nothing.
Alice tugged my sleeve and we were off through the patio doors at the rear of the house, running back to my cottage hand in hand. I was only too glad to go, and Alice's excuse was perfect.
As soon as we were over the river she said in a very hushed voice, “Shield me, stop him reading my mind.”
New posting Chapter 55 - Postscript
thank you for commenting.
Yes her mental health is a great worry, she has been under so much stress at a time when she isn't use to her new body and mind. The question is will she crack totally under the strain.
At least she is letting Edward know some of the issues she has and is speaking to Jasper again. The family are very support of her and that is helping.
How much should she trust Jasper?
Why does she hear a voice in her head when she is stressed?
really wnderful chap lol...i wonder dat bella's mom too hav sum abilities lik she do..
may b...bt its upto u.....
pls post soon.....im really wa8ng 4 ur nxt chapter....
lu reading..,,,and were is jake...pls include him too....
Thanks for the comment.
Jake and the pack will come back into the story in a couple of chapters - how could I go much further without them in! We all love the wolves.
I always thought that Renee was not a strong enough character in the books, so I'm going to enjoy filling her out as a character a little more. I always saw her as a lose end - but I'm trying to tie up the lose ends.
how does the inside-out shield work? i really can't understand it. what's the difference with just shielding alice and jasper from edward? or was that just the same?
you are right in the case of just having the three of them in the room there woud be very little difference. In fact it was a bad thing for her to do as if there had been anyone else outside Edward would not have been able to hear them either.
If I re write I may take it out. I was really using it as a way to remind readers that she can do this trick at times - she'll need it later in the story. But it was confusing and clumsy so it should go in a re write.
You must have been reading carefully to spot it - thank you.
This is really great! I hope the situations with the 'shadows' will be explained soon!
I am really grateful for your comment on my story: sunset forest. It is much easier to for people to read know!
many thanks for your comment.
Yes that is a question who are the shadows and why would anyone be following Bella? Demetri doesn't seem to know so they can't be Volturi - so who and why?
It is going to take a while to answer that one but there are plenty of suspects to think about.
Who do you think they could be?
great update! can't wait to see how this goes. please update again soon!
thanks for the comment.
Do you think that she should have told Edward more?
Thank you so much for reading and commenting on Cold Gray Light.
I'm very glad that you enjoyed the story.
I'm just playing a game really, can I use only the twilight characters and places to make up a new story that answers some of the questions left by the books. I fear I'm just going to create a whole load more questions along the way!
The only trouble is that it can be restrictive in what you can do with the characters. I guess I'm upsetting some Jasper fans.
I'm writing only from Bella's POV, mainly as I don't think I do a good job at pretending to be a man, they are still a total mystery to me, even when I have so many as family members. Again this is supposed to be like in the series which only had a single section written in Jacob's POV.
Fred and Demetri are fun as I have more room for making things up. Please don't see Demetri as the guy in the films, much more like the guy in the books. I think he looks like George Michael, the singer. A little older than the rest of the Cullens.
I put too many ideas into the story and there is the problem, I have so many story lines going on, there as so many clues in each chapter but I know people aren't noticing them. Did you notice the leaves blowing into the cottage on a still day? I think I need to prioritorize the plot lines more to make the story better.
Many thanks for you detailed comment and I hope you like Chapter 35, it's an action chapter.
Alice was right, I was thirsty. In the early hours of the following morning I left the cottage to hunt, leaving Edward with Nessie as she slept. I wanted to go alone for two reasons. First, although I loved Edward ‘distracting’ me, a little time to think now that I was calmer and had more perspective would be good, especially outside where I could run to alleviate any stress. Second, I didn’t want to feel a prisoner because of my shadows. Demetri could be wrong - maybe I wasn’t being followed and even if I were my shadows seemed to be benign.
The two deer I had taken down satisfied me but I really felt like hunting a carnivore. That would have to wait for a longer, more distant hunting trip to somewhere the big cat numbers could stand predation.
After hunting I went back to the main house to say Hi to some of the women. It was usually the best time, the safest time, to go to the main house. The men tended to be out, but Rose, Alice and Esme would most likely be in getting ready for the day. Hair still had to be washed even if you were a vampire.
As I walked in I went by habit to the kitchen to look on the notice board. We always looked for messages – with so many in the household it would be difficult if we were not organized. Esme insisted that we check the notice board whenever we entered the house. We all complied with Esme's wishes, not only because chaos would ensue if we didn't, but also out of love and respect for her. She was head of the home in the same way that Carlisle was head of the family.
That morning I had two messages, one open for all to see.
Bella, Charlie rang.
He’s on the local news,
he’s found the lost little girl and is giving interviews,
he wants us all to watch.
This was taken by Emmett – It had a smiley after the message and the handwriting, though not messy, was clearly not a matter of importance to the writer. My other message was also from the telephone message pad. It was folded over so that you couldn’t read it without unpinning it and had Bella in fancy calligraphy written on the outside. For a moment I was confused. I tried to place the style with it’s owner. Carlisle was the nearest match, but not quite. The “B” had small embellishments which were not exactly right for Carlisle and didn’t suit his personality. Then with a gasp I realized that Demetri must have taken a message for me. Would this person be next for an interview? Please not my mother or any of my human friends, I thought to myself. Maybe just Jacob, and Demetri knew Jacob already.
I pulled the note down so fast that the pin holding it shot high in the air and across the room, landing dangerously point-upwards in the doorway.
I flashed to pick it up before it impaled anyone – well, Nessie or Jake anyway – the rest of us would just crush the pin without even noticing.
I read the note as I crouched down to pick up the pin
Fred (no second name given) called for you at 8:32pm on Monday evening.
He asked you to return his call, he said that he is keen to visit you all soon.
He wishes you and your family well
There was a fancy “D” in the Taken by box on the note.
Relief again, as this was not my family, no one human, or even wolf for that matter. The image of Demetri holding scales over my mother came instantly to my mind and evaporated just as quickly.
This was just Fred, lonely vampire Fred. We’d told him not to contact us and we’d phone him. If he brought Demetri down on his own head that was his problem.
As I rose from the floor Demetri came through the door and had he been human rather than vampire he would have tripped over me. As it was he just caught me by my shoulders and carried us round in a spin, the momentum of his forward motion being used up after a turn and a half. We came to a halt facing each other, both of us grinning widely. He stared deeply into my eyes for a fraction of a second and then looked away as if he was looking for something but didn’t want to be caught looking.
“I’m so sorry Bella, I’m not used to living so close to someone I can’t position. I have become very lazy. I rely on my gift so much that I don’t use my eyes and ears well enough to see you before it’s too late. I can pinpoint the others in the house to the nearest inch but with you I get nothing at all.”
“My fault, I was crouching down behind the door. The board pin had shot of over the kitchen and I was just retrieving it.” I held up the pin as if it was evidence.
“Ah, I’m glad you got your telephone message. Esme has you all well trained.
“I wasn’t aware that there were any other vampires resident in the area.”
“Oh, no, Fred is in Canada. I’ve only met him the once, but he was taken with our family and promised a visit. ”
“I see, and you would have suggested no doubt that it may be better to delay such a visit until after I have gone back to Italy, that would certainly be understandable.”
I smiled, not in apology, but more in recognition that my plans were very transparent.
“Yes, I didn’t want to complicate things any more than required.”
“Well, I think that things are slightly more complicated than you wish already. He is in Port Angeles, not Canada. I guess he is ignoring your advice.”
“What? What is he doing there of all places!”
“I imagine that he is planning to visit you. I can’t see why else he would have come all this way. Does he know about the Wolves? He may well cross their territory coming from Port Angeles to here.”
“No, no he doesn’t, we warned him not to come here without talking to us first. We said that there were dangers. We didn’t specify ... he must have thought that we were lying to keep him away.” There was anguish in my voice. I was starting to imaging the wolves running towards Fred and dropping in front of him as they hit his sickness wall. What would he do to them? Would he try to destroy them whilst they were down?
Demetri was suddenly very businesslike. “I can feel that he is moving towards us. We will need to move quickly.”
I forced my head to think. “I have to go to him and bring him here. I need to keep him out of the wolves' territory. Could you tell me exactly the route he is going, please?”
“Certainly, but it would be a lot easier if I accompanied you.”
I ran from the room. “Edward, Carlisle, Esme, anyone?” I called in a loud voice. I knew they’d hear if they were within a quarter mile of the house. “Ohhh! where are they now.”
Jasper ran in. “Bella, what’s wrong?”
“Fred is coming here. Demetri can feel him. We need to bring him to the house avoiding the wolves' territory. If they find Fred first they will try to defend their land and then I don’t know what will happen. They could fight and they could all die.”
“No problem, I can sort him out if you can shield me. He should have listened to Carlisle's instructions.”
“Jasper, there is no need to kill someone just because they want to come and pay us a visit,” I said, rather shocked by his assumption.
“Hmm, we’ll see how it goes.”
I turned to look at Demetri, “OK then, are we going to run or go by car?”
“Running, I think, it’s across country. But tell me why you need to come with us Bella, Jasper and I can probably handle it.”
We were out of the back door and running through the forest.
“No, we need Bella as a shield,” Jasper explained as I was dialing on my cell turning it back on for the first time after hunting. I ignored all the messages from Alice.
“Edward, where are you?”
“At the cottage with Nessie. What’s the problem? You sound distressed.”
“Fred, he’s coming to visit us. I’m going with Jasper and Demetri to bring him here without going through the wolves' territory. He just better not be thirsty.”
I’ll find someone to look after Nessie and come with you.”
“No, stay there, we’ll be fine. Jasper can calm the situation down and it’ll all be fine. Just find Alice and keep a check on us.”
“OK, will do.”
As soon as I was off the phone to Edward I called Jacob's home number. The wolves never carried cells.
Billy answered. “Hello?” The gentle tone held all the authority of a leader. Even in my panic I realized that I hadn’t talked to Billy since my transformation and I wondered about my reception. Despite his son's closeness to our family and devotion to my daughter, Billy may not be pleased to hear from me.
“Billy, it’s Bella.”
“You sound different now, like one of them. I guess that is to be expected. What can I do for you?
“Billy, can we chat later, we have a bit of a situation. Is Jacob there? I need to talk to him.”
“No, but I can call round for one of them easily enough, or Sam for that matter.”
“OK, thanks Billy. Tell him that Fred is on his way here. He knows who Fred is. They won’t be able to fight him because he has a talent but I’m going with Demetri and Jasper to bring him to our house. We can sort this, they just need to keep out of the way and don’t try to attack. Keep close around La Plush. I’ll call again when it’s all clear. OK?”
“Consider the message delivered. Can you fight him safely?”
“Yes, but he is only here to visit with us I think. He is trying to be sociable, not looking for a fight. But if the wolves go to attack him I’m sure he would defend himself. I don’t want any fighting, I don’t want anyone hurt or sick. Look, I’ll call to give the all clear. Thanks Billy.”
I clicked my phone shut and put on a rush of speed to outstrip Jasper and Demetri a little. I was still newborn enough to outrun everyone except Edward.
“What exactly can he do?” Demetri asked again, “I’d like to be prepared.”
“He makes you feel sick if you are within a small distance of him. This is involuntary at the moment and rather
ramps his social life. But he can ramp up the effect at will to make people very sick, so sick that you can’t see him or even think of him without feeling sick again. It’s just a mind trick so Bella’s shield works against him. She can shield us.” Jasper muttered quietly to him.
“Is he a fighter? I’m surprised that we haven’t heard of someone with such a talent. Where did he come from?”
I noticed how easily Demetri slipped back into the Volturi plural. I hated it; the whole thought that they thought that they should know everything, them the rulers, and us the governed. I saw the image again of Demetri with scales in his hands this time with Fred in the front of him, answering for his very existence.
Jasper replied to Demetri, “No, he is only still young, a year or so, and he has not been taught. He has no coven.” Jasper smiled, “Bella managed to take him down herself a few days before you arrived when she was up in Canada with Tania’s clan.”
“Bella, I didn’t realize you were a fighter as well. I’m impressed.”
I replied, a little irritated by his tone, “There is no need to be, I’m not much of a fighter at all. I was just worried about what Fred was going to do to my family and I needed to stop him. I need a lot more training to be much of a threat to anyone with the least bit of skill.”
“Yes we all needed instruction in the beginning. I’m sure Jasper is well placed to instruct you.”
“I’ve given her a few pointers. I don’t like to see my sister defenseless.”
“Who created this Fred? And why is he loose to trouble the world?”
That was the question we feared on Fred’s behalf. This was the reason we’d asked him not to come here while there was one of the Volturi guard living with us.
“We will leave him to tell his own story, Demetri. He is not our responsibility. He is not part of our coven. He does not live like us. He needs to talk for himself,” Jasper exclaimed forcefully.
“Well said my friend, I’ll talk to him. Bella can shield me while I do so, if she would be so kind,” placated Demetri.
“I don’t mind helping you to talk to him but I’m not helping anyone pull him apart without good reason.”
“Let’s hope that doesn’t need doing,” Demetri said grimly. “It is not for me to judge, but for my masters.”
Again with the ‘masters thing’, why did he have to be so subservient to them?
“Look, we aren’t going to fight him, he is just coming to visit us. We are just collecting him so he doesn’t have any trouble with his journey, that's all.” I was feeling agitated now. I didn’t want any fighting, it was so unnecessary. The only problem was that he may run into the wolves on the way to us. Did we have to blow it up any more than that?
It took us sixteen minutes to get close to Fred. We were intersecting his path from an angle to stay in our territory. At the edge of the wolves' territory I stopped running and turned to Demetri .
“Thank you for your help, Demetri. You better go back now. You are our guest and it would not be right to put you in danger. If you could, please just tell me the right direction to find him.”
“Bella I don’t think that there is any danger here. I’ll come with you, you’ll find him quicker with me.”
“Thank you Demetri. Let’s be in and out of their territory as quickly as we can.”
So we ran quickly forward into the wolves' territory, which made me feel uncomfortable even with the warning I had given Billy, but there was no sound or scent of wolves in the air. I shouted into the forest when we were about quarter of a mile away.
“Fred ... Fred it’s Bella. Just stay where you are. We are coming for you, don’t keep running.”
As we got closer I pushed my shield over Demetri and Jasper, and we slowed. Fred had slowed too. I could hear him now.
“Fred, it’s Bella. We’ve come to show you the way to our house.”
And he was there between the trees, he’d come to a halt. I looked at Jasper and Demetri checking that they were not affected by him and they looked OK.
“Bella, I wasn’t expecting a welcoming committee. How did you know where to find me? I’ve missed you so much.”
Fred, beaming all over his face, walked forward to greet me. He was just as I’d seen him last time, glorious, blond haired, about 6’2”. He walked directly up to me and grabbed me into a big bear hug, Just due to his size, he picked my feet off the floor.
“It’s so good to see you again Bella.”
I was stunned. This was a bit familiar for someone who I’d only met once, and the last time I had got into a fight and injured him. Jasper and Demetri immediately took up defensive crouches, and growls issued from Jasper's chest. Fred put me down immediately.
“Step away from her,” Jasper growled.
Fred look puzzled but did as he was told.
“Jaz, it’s OK, he’s just being friendly, he means me no harm.”
Jasper straightened up, obviously feeling that he had overreacted. Maybe it had taken that long for him to process Fred’s feelings as well as his actions. Jasper, coming from a different era, would never have walked up to a female outside of the family and hugged them. He would consider this inappropriate.
“I’m sorry, my misjudgment.”
At this Demetri straighten up too.
Fred looked at us all and noticed the tension.
“Is there something wrong?”
Long story, Fred, we’ve got to go. This isn’t a good place to be.”
“I’ve had no trouble.”
“Trust me, come with us, we need to be a couple of miles north, that’s all. This isn’t our territory.”
“Another vampire? Maybe I can help.”
“Nothing that easy. Come home with us and we’ll explain it to you. There is no danger if we stick to our own patch.”
And we ran. We ran fast, straight for our border. We were about half a mile away when we heard them. They were going to cut us off before we crossed the line.
End of Chapter 35 - Messages
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