After her first taste of vampire blood, a tortured girl goes after her bullies with the help of her vampire boyfriend.
Chapter 1 Forks
Chapter 1 Forks
Every summer, I went to Forks to stay with my dad. But, this time was different. This time, I was staying for the whole year. I wanted to give my mom some space. She wanted to spend more time with Phil who’s always traveling, so I said ‘you go with Phil. Charlie will take care of me.’ And that’s how I ended up in this small town with its rain and its cloudy skies.
Nothing had changed since I was here last summer. My room was the same, has been since I was a baby. I stood in the doorway with my luggage, staring at the old rocking chair in the middle of my room. First chance I get, I’m putting it down in the basement.
Charlie called for me, making his way up the stairs.
“I talked with your mother. I already enrolled you into Forks High School. You start tomorrow.”
Great. I get to start over at a new high school. I was practically invisible at my old one in Arizona. I was a ghost. Since this town is so small, maybe the school will be different. Maybe, I’ll be different.
“Hey, Dad, what’s for dinner, tonight?”
Charlie hesitated. He wasn’t a great cook. Fish was always at the top of the menu at his place, and not because it’s his favorite dish. He loves to fish. Got to do something with all those fish that he catches.
“Fish fillet,” he responded, and leaned in. “I hope you don’t mind.”
“No. Fish is great, Dad.”
He nodded and smiled. Fish wasn’t great. I thought I’d humor him, and myself.
At dinner, a piece of baked cod lay dead across my plate. I stabbed at it with my fork. Charlie sat across from me with the same meal. He reached for the bottle of ketchup at the center of the table and squeezed it over his food.
“Aren’t you hungry?” he asked. I took a deep breath and sighed. I could see now, if I were going to survive mealtime, I was going to have to mix it up, myself.
“You should let me make dinner, tomorrow, Dad,” I offered. He looked up, stupefied.
“Huh? No,” he shook his head. “I’ll make dinner. That’s my job.”
“But, Dad, fish… every night is…”
“I know,” he said. “Boring.”
“You should let me cook for you.”
“I’ll order out, tomorrow. What do you want? Pizza? Chinese?”
“Pizza,” I said.
“Pizza it is,” he said, with a smile stretching underneath his mustache. Our conversation ran dry. Neither of us was much for talkers. Charlie and I had that in common. He was the strong, silent type. I had inherited much of his quiet personality. I don’t consider myself a shy person, just quiet and sometimes, awkward. But, most people see me as shy. That’s just how I come off.
We didn’t mind the silence, we invited it. We were used to it. After our quiet dinner, I headed up to my room for a shower.
I dumped my personal items out on the bathroom counter. One good thing about staying with Charlie is I won’t have Rene hovering over me all the time. I can go shopping alone and do other things without her trying to make choices for me.
The water takes a while to get hot. I had forgotten and stepped inside the shower. Ice cold water attacked me, making me quiver. It took nearly 2 minutes to get hot.
Later, I watched TV, downstairs in the living room, until I fell asleep. I felt Charlie picking me up and carrying me upstairs to my room, but I was too knocked out to care.
The alarm clock got me up the next day. It was still dark outside, so I was a bit confused about what time it was.
“Bella, time for school,” Charlie called out in the hall. I groaned, loudly, and got up despite my reluctance.
Charlie was in his police uniform, about to head out the door when I came down stairs with my backpack.
“Come on, I’ll give you a ride,” he said.
“I’m a senior. I don’t want to show up on the first day of school with my dad… in a cop car.”
Charlie laughed. “How about I park half a mile away from the school, and you jump out when no one is looking.”
“Not funny, Dad.”
“Come on. No one will care. I’ll see what we can do about getting you a car, later.”
“How much later?”
“Come on. We don’t want to be late.”
So, I got into the cruiser with Charlie. Inside, I was dying, mortified. He got the car started and we were on our way.
“So, what’s Phil like?” he asked, out of the blue.
“Phil? Oh yeah, he’s great,” I said.
I paused. “We don’t talk much.”
Charlie cocked an eyebrow.
“We don’t have anything in common,” I went on. “I hardly see him, anyway. He’s always gone.”
“How does your mom feel about that?”
“Why do you care?” I asked, curiously.
“I care because… you’re mom and I might not be together anymore, but I still want the best for her.”
He sounded a little nervous.
“That’s nice, Dad.”
He fell silent and I reached for the radio right when he pulled up to a curb. I ducked before seeing kids walking towards the school building.
“I thought you were going to park somewhere else!”
Charlie chuckled. “I thought you knew I was joking.”
“Well, your sarcasm was totally lost on me, Dad,” I growled. I opened the door and got out.
“Bye, Bells. Have a good day.”
I slammed the door and stood back to watch him drive off. I hadn’t realized I was being watched until I turned around. A bunch of students were staring at me. I couldn’t decide quick enough if I should introduce myself or keep walking. I kept walking out of shattered nerves. A few of the kids laughed.
The school only had double doors, no security like in Arizona, and no cops hanging around metal detectors or patrolling the hallways. I felt like I was in Kansas.
After I equipped myself with a schedule, I started the daunting task of locating all my classes, memorizing them and the room numbers to which they belong.
A bump pushed me forward, knocking me into someone’s back. He turned around, scowling at me. The boy who bumped me started to apologize.
“Oh. Sorry,” he said. His hair was straight and jet black. “You’re Isabella, the chief’s daughter, right?”
“Um, yeah,” I said.
The other boy turned his scowl into a grin. He had shoulder length brown hair that was flat ironed straight. He held out his hand for me to shake.
“I’m Ben,” he said. “Nice to meet you.”
“I’m Eric,” the other boy broke between us, eagerly. “It’s nicer to meet you.”
Eric had glasses and was overly friendly. Ben wore a letterman jacket, obvious jock.
“He’s a geek,” Ben said, cortly. “Don’t mind him. I can show you around, if you would like me.”
“I like you,” I said. “to,” I added. “I mean, I’d like you to… show me around.”
“I’ll come with,” Eric said. “Just in case, Benjamin here gets lost. He's not very bright.”
“Haha, real funny,” Ben said, sarcastically.
“Um, guys, I don’t want to be late,” I broke in, meekly.
“Sure,” Ben said, putting his fist on his waist, inviting me to put my arm through the loop he made with his arm. Eric walked behind us with a stoic expression.
After my first class, biology, was over. I stepped outside to see Eric leaning against a locker, waiting for me. I sighed and walked away before he could see me.
The cafeteria was loud and crowded. I saw Ben walking with his tray, and I thought I’d sit with him since I knew who he was. But, I paused when I realized he was heading for the table lined with jocks and a couple of cheerleaders. I flew into a panic and spun around, spilling my tray of food all over some girl. Mortified, I leaned down to pick up what was salvageable of my lunch.
“I’m so sorry,” I squeaked.
“It’s okay,” she laughed, and leaned down to help. “The janitor will clean it up. Get off the floor, you’re making a scene.” She pulled me up by my jacket. I had two apples and a carton of choco milk in my hands.
“I’m Angela,” she said, holding a plain milk. She had dark hair and a smooth, pretty face underneath her glasses. We moved quickly over to a vacant table and sat down.
“I’m Bella,” I said, immediately. “I’m so sorry.”
“Stop it. You didn’t get me,” she said, wiping mashed potatoes off the rim of her shirt. “Well, you got me a little.”
I sighed and put my head down.
“You’re Chief Swan’s daughter.”
“Yes, I am.”
“Welcome to Forks. Or should I say… welcome back,” she said it like a question, and then laughed. “I see you around, sometimes, during the summers. You keep to yourself a lot.”
“Oh, I probably meant to say hello.”
“-It’s okay. I’m a little shy, myself. Not like it’s easy to fit in around here,” she said, eyeing the table Ben was seated.
“Do you know Ben?” I asked. Then, I winced at myself. “Of course you know Ben. I met him earlier. And, -“
“What did he say to you?” she cut me off, her words rushing.
I stopped, alarmed. “Nothing. He showed me around. He was really nice… and helpful.”
“I’m sure he was,” she said, cynically. I looked over at his table. They all looked so happy, laughing and talking. “See the blonde chick right under him, that’s Lauren. She’s his girlfriend. And the girl next to her with the brown hair and blue eyes is Jessica. Across from them are the other jock straps, Tyler, Jack, Mike, Masen, and Cody. They’re all jerks, just so you know.”
“Thank you,” I said, uncomfortably.
“You’re welcome,” she said, with a big smile.
“Hey, guys!” chimed a familiar voice. It was Eric. I cringed when he sat down next to me. “Bella!” He hugged me with one arm. “How was biology, honey?”
“Boring,” I said, peeling his arm off of me.
“Hey, babe!” Angela exclaimed. She reached over and kissed Eric. I was shocked. I don’t know how it happened, but it did. Angela and Eric had sealed my fate. I felt cursed. I get to be a dork all over again.
“Bella, this is my babe, Angie,” Eric said.
“We’ve met,” she said.
“So, ladies, what are we doing tonight?” Eric asked.
“Hey, Bella, you can hang out with us!”
“That’s really awesome, but I don’t want to feel like a third wheel. You two are together.”
“That doesn’t mean we can’t all hang out,” Angela said, disappointed.
“Yeah. We’re all friends, here.”
“I already made plans for tonight,” I said, trying to dodge a bullet.
“Oh yeah? We can tag along,” Angela said.
“No really. I won’t be any fun. I’m not much of a hostess.”
“We can all hang out tonight. We can do something together. We promise we won’t get all happy- couple on you.”
“No, really,” I laugh, fake.
“-Isabella Swan.” I looked up when I heard my name in a brassy voice. It was Ben, and my heart literally fell into the pit of my stomach. I accidentally knocked Eric’s milk off the table. Ben caught it before it fell to the floor, and placed it back on the table. Eric narrowed his eyes and chewed his biscuit.
“Clumsy, as well as beautiful,” Ben said. Angela stuck her finger in her mouth and gagged.
“Benjamin, don’t you have a skirt tail to be chasing?” Eric asked. “I don’t think Lauren would approve of you trying to hit on my new friend, which you are failing at by the way, because she’s not interested. She’s with us.”
I wanted to stab Eric in the chest with my fork. My cheeks glow an embarrassing red.
“Oh. Is that right?” Ben leaned in, his hands clasped on the rim of the table.
“Yes, that’s right,” Angela nodded, proudly.
“She can speak for herself,” Ben snapped, causing Angela and me to jump. He turned to me. “Bella, come join us. You don’t want to be branded a nerd because of these two losers, do you? Come sit with us.”
Angela and Eric looked nervous. I felt nervous. I didn’t know how to answer. I felt obligated to stay where I was, and a part of me wanted to jump up and go with Ben.
“Come on, Bella. Come meet the guys… and the girls.”
“Maybe, some other time,” I said, in a defeated voice. Angela and Eric relaxed, satisfied.
“I tried to give you an opportunity to be one of us and you flake out.” Ben shook his head. “I tried to save you. Have fun being a loser.” He walked back over to his table. I have never been called that before, not even by kids at my old school. It really hurt, especially coming from Ben. Frankly, I was embarrassed.
“I told you they were jerks,” she said. “And don’t listen to him. He’ll say anything to bring you down. You’re not a loser. We’re not losers.”
But, he’s so hot. I could tell that Ben was going to be a big problem for me.
After school, Angela and Eric were right beside me, talking to each other. I had zoned out and was thinking. If the opportunity came, would I ditch them to be popular? As if I could ever be that. Ben had to be joking.
“Bella,” Angela said, tapping my shoulder. “We’ve never seen the inside of the chief’s house.”
“I’ll bring the movies,” Eric added.
“Movies at my place, it is,” I confirmed.
“Great! We’ll be there, tonight at 10,” Angela said.
“Can’t wait,” I said.
Eric and Angela got into a red Honda I assumed belonged to Angela since she was the one in the driver’s seat.
I had to stick around and wait for Charlie to pick me up. Charlie brought the cruiser around, finally. The remaining students watched, curious as to why the chief of the town was at the school. I put my head down and walked towards the cruiser. I hurried and got inside. Charlie smiled.
“Why are you staring at me? Drive!” I said. “Are you trying to humiliate me some more?”
Charlie sighed. “I talked to Billy. He has a truck he’s willing to give us for free.”
“Free? Why? What's wrong with it?”
Charlie sighed again. “Just be thankful you won’t have to catch a ride with me anymore.”
“You’re right. I’m sorry, Dad. My day was pretty crappy.”
“Don’t sweat it, Bella.”
“Oh. Two people from school are coming over tonight, to watch movies.”
Charlie blinked. “I thought you said you had a crappy day. Couldn’t have been that bad. You made some friends, already?”
“Why are you surprised?”
“I expected you to have a harder time, that’s all. You did good, though.”
“Don’t get too comfortable, Dad. This is just day one.”
post more soon it is good
thanks. i'll try
sounds really good please post again soon
Chapter two Jacob
We had pizza for dinner, like Charlie promised. When I got up in the morning, it was raining when I looked outside my bedroom window. I also saw a red truck outside, next to a dark blue truck and three people with Charlie. I got dressed and went downstairs.
Charlie came and pulled me outside.
“Bella, you know Jacob, Billy, and Rachel.”
“Oh. Hi, guys,” I waved, timidly.
Jacob had long, black hair pulled back in a ponytail, just like Billy’s, except, Billy’s hair was down, cascading over his shoulders. Billy wore a fishing hat with a fish hook dangling from it. Rachel smiled at me and hugged me. She had been away at college.
“Bella, I haven’t seen you since we were kids,” she said. “how are you?”
“I’m great,” I replied.
“That’s wonderfrul. My dad got you a truck.”
Jacob shot dagger eyes at her. “It was suppose to be a surprise,” he said. “It’s nice to see you again, Bella.” He had the same sunny bright smile as his sister.
“Same,” I said, hugging him back. Jake always made me nervous, but it was a good, fluttery nervous.
I studied my new truck, which didn’t look new at all. No wonder it was free.
“There’s a cookout, tonight, at our place. You guys are invited,” Billy said. Charlie looked at me for approval.
It would be rude to turn down such fun. I nodded. “We’ll be there.”
“Great!" Rachel said. “This would be a good opportunity to test out your new truck.”
“Now?” I asked.
“Better time than ever,” she said.
Rachel and I rode down to LaPush in my truck, while the guys went in Billy’s truck. “How is she?”
“The breaks are a little rusty,” I said, testing them. We were half way to LaPush when my truck pooped out smoke and stopped in the road. I started the truck up again, slamming on the breaks.
“Needs oiling, I know. My brother will work out the rest of the kinks, free of charge,” she said.
“If you keep giving me free service, you guys are going to be out of business," I said, jokingly. "but, thanks.”
I followed Billy’s truck, that Jacob was driving, onto their front lawn.
“Where’s Rebecca? She back yet?”
“She’s living on campass, now,” Rachel said, sadly. “It’d be a miracle if she ever comes home. I’m starting to think she likes school more than this place. I can’t really blame her. We don’t have much here worth showing off. It’s just the beach, the rez, and the band council.”
Rachel got out of the truck, and we met up with Charlie, Billy, and Jacob. Jacob became unusually nervous. His hands were inside his jean pockets.
“Jake, are you feeling okay?” I whispered.
“No, I’m fine,” he said, quickly. “I need to talk to you, though. It’s important.”
Just then, Leah, Paul, and Seth showed up dressed down as if it were summer time.
“Bella, nice to see you again,” Leah said.
“Likewise,” I said.
“Are you here for the cookout?” Seth asked.
“Yeah. me and Charlie.”
The clouds darkened over head and glided slowly across the sky. It looked like a storm was coming.
“I hope we don’t have to re-schedule,” Paul said, looking up at the gray sky. White streaks of lightening flashed.
“We better get inside,” Rachel said, leading the way. Billy’s house was small, but comfy. I ended up in Rachel’s room with her and Leah. Thunder cracked, shaking the entire house. I jumped, spooked. Rachel and Leah laughed.
“You’ll get used to that in no time,” Leah said. “All it ever does is rain around here.”
“It’s weird, right? I mean, when you think about it,” Rachel said.
“Freaky,” Leah added.
“A lot of strange things go on around here,” Rachel said. “Last night, I went outside to get my schoolbooks from my car, and I could have sworn I saw a giant head peeking out of the trees. A wolf head.”
I looked at her.
“A giant… wolf head?” Leah asked. Rachel nodded.
“When it saw me staring, it went back into the trees.”
Leah shrugged. “It was dark. It could have been anything, even your imagination.”
“I don’t think so,” Rachel said. “It looked like a wolf. A big wolf.”
Rachel retrieved one of her college course books from the desk. Leah leaned into the wall.
“My cousin, Emily is coming tomorrow,” Leah said. Rachel had sat down at the desk, her nose in the books. I sat on her bed.
“And?” Rachel asked.
“I love her and everything, but I don’t think I will be able to make much time for her. Sam and I have so much planned, tomorrow.”
“You can squeeze her in,” Rachel said.
“How long is she staying?” I asked, because I was feeling left out.
“Just for a couple of days,” Leah said. “She doesn’t live far away, just with the Makah tribe which is 25 miles north of here. She’s an old fashioned girl, not my type. We got along great as kids, but we’re so different now.”
“I’m sure you and Sam will make her feel welcome,” Rachel said. “I’ve got some homework to do. You guys don’t mind?”
“Nope,” Leah said, twirling out of the room when Rachel mentioned ‘homework’. I followed her, not wanting to be a distraction. We bumped into Paul who was coming up the walkway.
“Hey,” He said.
“Rachel’s busy,” Leah said, her hands on her hips.
“I wasn’t looking for Rachel,” he said, defensively.
“Were you looking for me?”
“Ew! No way.”
“Bye, Paul,” Leah said, rolling her eyes. She pushed him aside, grabbed my arm and we went to the kitchen. “He has a huge crush on her. Even she knows it. He just won’t admit it.”
Charlie was helping Jacob pull the grill around to the backyard.
“We’re still having the cookout, even though it’s pouring outside?” I asked.
“You’re not afraid of a little rain, are you?” Leah asked, teasingly. I shook my head.
“Of course not!”
Seth got us sodas from the fridge and sat between us on the loveseat.
“Do you think she really saw a giant wolf?” I asked. Seth’s head popped up.
“What giant wolf?” he asked, startled.
“Nah,” Leah said.
“What are you guys talking about?” he asked.
“Nothing,” Leah said.
“I’m not a baby. Tell me.”
“It’s too scary for you.”
“I’m fifteen,” Seth said.
“You are, but you have the brain of a five year old,” Leah said. Seth crossed his arms and turned to me. Leah shook her head at me, wanting me to keep my mouth shut. But, I couldn’t resist. I let it out.
“Rachel thinks she saw a giant wolf, last night,” I blurted. Leah sighed.
“Where?” he asked.
“We don’t know,” Leah said.
Seth tensed up, and I was worried that I did the wrong thing by telling him.
“Skin walkers,” Seth breathed.
“That’s just a fable,” Leah said.
“No. It’s real.”
“It’s just a story meant to scare you,” Leah said.
“How can so many people claim to see them, if they don’t exist,” Seth said. “Are all those people lying? Is Rachel a liar?”
“What’s a skin walker?” I broke in.
“They are people who can take the form of animals,” Leah said.
“They have these glowing red eyes and they only show themselves at night,” Seth added.
“And they don’t exist,” Leah said, staring seth in the eyes.
“Don’t listen to her, Bella. She’ll change her tune when a skin walker is clawing her eyes out.”
“See. I knew you weren’t mature enough to be in our conversation,” Leah huffed.
“Kids, food is ready,” Charlie said from the back door.
“Hey, mongrel. Go upstairs and get Rachel,” Leah said. Seth took her soda and did what she told him.
Outside, the rain had stopped. It wasn’t completely gone, though. I felt a few drips hit my head.
Chard burgers sizzled on the grill beside wieners, and buns overturned to get them crispy.
“Sam is on his way over,” Leah told Billy. “May want to double up.”
Billy nodded, and Charlie tossed more wieners on the grill. I felt someone’s hand slip into mine. It was Jacob. He pulled me away to the swing set under a tree. We sat down.
“You wanted to tell me something. Sorry. I sort of gravitated towards the girls.”
“I don’t know how to say this,” he said. “It happened a long time ago and I should have told you then-.”
“Told me what?”
“I was afraid to say anything before. Imprinting. I’ve always hated what it does to people. But I figured, if it’s my best friend, then it shouldn’t be so bad. Every year when summer ends, my heart would break, because you’d be going back to Arizona.”
“Woah. Slow down, Jake. What’s imprinting?”
“Why would I freak?”
“Bella, I’m in love with you.”
After those words came out of his mouth, all I could hear was the wind blowing. No voices, only the wind.
“Imprinting made you fall in love with me?” I asked, dumbfounded.
“NO. Well, Yes. It’s hard to explain.”
“We can’t be in love Jake, we’re friends.”
“If you’ll let me explain.”
I got up and he pulled me back down.
“I love you, too, Jake… but, I’m not in love with you.”
He stared at me with a blank face. The fire, the light in his eyes going out.
“You know I never want to be the girl that hurts you.”
“Too late. It just happened.”
I felt cut deep. I got off the swing and looked back at Jacob. He was looking away from me.
“Don’t let this change anything,” I said.
“It changes everything,” he shot back. “I shouldn’t have said anything.”
“No. You were right to tell me.”
“It didn’t do me any good.”
“We’re still friends,” I said, with hope.
“Yeah,” he said. He got up. “Friends is all we’ll ever be.”
He said it like it was a bad thing. He walked back over to the grill. I wiped my cheeks and what I thought was rain, was my tears.
I sniffed and joined the others. Jake sat on the back porch. Sam came out of the house with Leah on his arm. Seth burst between them.
“I thought I told you to get Rachel,” Leah fussed at him.
“She’s busy making out with Paul. She threw a book at me and told me to get out,” he said.
Interesting alternative approach to the story.
It will be interesting to see how things develop in this story!
Another great chapter.
I hope that Bella and Jacob are still friends. I hope that Bella finds out more about imprinting and understands what jacob has said to her.
great update! can't wait to see what happens next!
Chapter 3 Drama
I sat next to Jake on the steps with my food. We ate in silence because he wouldn't speak to me. Leah sat across Sam's lap as he fed her a hot dog. And Paul must have gotten over his denial because he and Rachel looked pretty close and cozy. The sky was darkening, and Charlie wanted to leave because he had work early in the morning. I had school and so did Jacob and the others.
Jacob was standing at the front door, his arms crossed. I walked up to him with my hands inside my pockets.
"I can't feel something that's not there," I said. His eyes finally looked at me.
"I'm not asking you to."
"Then, what do you want?"
"I want to be normal. Excuse me," he said, breaking passed me to get to his bedroom. I followed him, even after he closed the door on me. I pressed my ear up against it.
"I hate leaving things like this. We'll talk soon okay. I'll call you, later." I waited for a response, but there was none. "Bye, Jake."
"Bella," Charlie called. I had to go.
Dad rode back home with me. He sat slumped in the passenger seat, his cap covering his sleepy eyes. The headlights shined down the dark pathway as I drove.
I couldn't help thinking about the skin walkers Leah and Seth were talking about. This is why you don't listen to scary stories before bed... or before you get on the rode in the dead of night.
When we got home, i hopped on my first priority; Call Jacob. I did several times. I was starting to feel desperate.
"Maybe his phone is turned off," Charlie said.
I slept uneasily that night, tossing and turning. I thought about Jacob more than usual and how the imprinting thing is messing up our friendship. Why did it have to be me?
In the morning, Charlie had left for work, so there was no point in making breakfast. I got in my truck and drove to the school. People were staring. Maybe it was the truck. But there were other old fashioned vehicles all over the school parking lot. Maybe, it was me.
I called Jacob one last time and gave him one last chance to pick up. He didn't. I gave up and got out of the truck. When I slammed the door, black smoke came out of the engine.
"Great. What a piece of junk," I complained.
"Nice ride," Eric said. He and Angela came up to me. "I didn't know you were into old cars."
"I'm not. It was a gift. I didn't choose it. It chose me."
"Lucky," Angela said. We walked in the school together. I only had one class with Angela and that was biology for first period. I felt alone for most of day, and bored. My old school must have been at least a semester ahead of Forks High School because I already learned everything on the semester curriculum. I spent most of the class periods doodling on my notebooks and pretending to be interested.
There was one class I was not looking forward to. Drama class. I had no idea why that was even on my schedule. I guess it's required. The closer I got to the door, the more I felt like vomiting. Maybe if i sit in the very back and be very quiet, the teacher won't ask me to do anything. I entered the class and was greeted by Mrs. Spelding, a homely woman with shaggy red hair piled high on her head in a bun. I percieved drama teachers to be fun and exciting, but Mrs. Spelding looked the opposite of that. As we all took our seats, she started talking.
"Improvisation," she said. "Every great actor uses it religiously as a means of practice, and perfecting their craft. I will go down the roster and each student will come up to the front of the class and show us how good you are at improvisation. You will not be graded. I just want to know what I am working with this year. Where each of you stand as far as acting talent goes. Be as spontaneous and creative as you can." Then, she smiled.
I slumped in my seat. This was worse than I thought. Mrs. Spelding went down the roster pretty fast, or maybe it seemed that way because I was terrified. I couldn't get my thoughts together, though I tried. All my ideas seemed stupid and when it was finally my turn, it took me a while to make it to the front of the class. People stared at me because I was so slow to get up. When I reached Mrs. Spelding's desk, I turned and faced the crowded class. They seemed impatient, mostly. Some people didn't care and were staring out the window, instead of watching me.
The hot dogs and burgers from last night were bubbling in my stomach. I must have had a weird expression on my face because people were looking at me strangely.
"Are you gonna blow chunks?"
My vision was suddenly blurry and I couldn't clearly see who had said that. I didn't know what I was doing. I was going to act out a scene from Titanic, but when I got up there, that idea seemed too big for me.
"Um," I started. But, when that's all that would come out, I froze. It was the last thing I wanted to happen. I stood there, staring like an idiot for two minutes.
"Ms. Swan?" Mrs. Spelding asked, annoyed. I couldn't speak. I turned and looked at her for help. "Sit down, Ms. Swan," she said, writing something on her tablet. I hung my head low and took my seat, embarrassed. Students chuckled at me, some were even bold enough to laugh out loud. If this was for a grade, I would have gotten an F. I hadn't realized that Lauren, Jessica, and Ben were in the class. I wanted to jump out of the window.
So, now the whole class knew I couldn't act. How the heck was I going to pass if I can't act?
At lunch, Eric and Angela sat with me. A girl wearing a catholic school girl uniform came up to our table.
"You're Isabella, right?"
"Oh. Right. As if that's any better. Sorry you choked in Drama, today. Acting can be so hard." It was Lauren and she was being sarcastic. Her little joke got a few laughs from her friends. I wanted to get up and kick her in the face. "Angela, are you sure you want to eat that? Last thing you need is an extra pound."
Eric got up and got in Lauren's face, while Angela insecurely played with the country steak on her plate.
"Hey, why don't you go be annoying somewhere else?" Eric said. "My baby is perfect."
"The only reason you're even with her is because you can't get a girl like me," Lauren said. "She's sloppy seconds, anyway. ---She'll probably give you a disease," Lauren whispered loudly. Angela got up and ran out of the cafeteria. Jessica and Lauren both laughed before going to sit at their own table with the baseball players. Eric didn't move. He was frozen.
"Should I go find Angela?" I asked.
"No," he said, finally. He sat back down. "She's probably in the bathroom. She'll be fine." He shrugged.
"What was that about?"
"What? That? They're just doing what they do best..."
"What were they talking about though? There's nothing wrong with Angela."
"Well, Angie has an eating disorder. You can't tell at first because she's so hot. But, she has all the symptoms if you watch her closely around food. She spent the whole summer at a clinic outside of town, that specializes in eating disorders. She had bulimia. She says she's fine, better, cured even."
"You don't believe her?"
"I have to believe her. She wouldn't lie to me," he said, unsure.
"And the other thing?"
"Oh. Last year, Ben somehow convinced her that he was in love with her. They went out, but it was a joke and she didn't know about it. Then, Ben dumped her publicly, and got back with Lauren who was also in on the whole thing. They said it was just a prank, but Angela didn't think it was funny."
"Why would they do something like that?"
"Sick sense of humor, I guess. Who knows why those jerks do what they do. I wish they would just drop dead. We'd all be better off."
We waited for Angela to come back. I realized who my real friends were in that moment. I shouldn't want anything to do with a guy like Ben, especially when I know what he's capable of. Angela hadn't returned and lunch period was just about over.
"Come on. I'll walk you to your class," Eric said.
"That's alright. I know where everything is now," I said.
A girl came up to our table. She was short, with short thin red hair. "Bella Swan, right?"
"Yes," I smiled.
"I have a message for you." Then, she dumped her tray of food all over my shirt. I stood, shocked. I had corn in my bra.
"What the heck was that for!" Eric shouted at her.
"They told me to do it," she said, glancing back at Jessica and some girl with pink and purple hair.
"Do you always do what those sleaze bags tell you!"
"Sorry. They promised me concert tickets."
"Get out of here!" Eric said. The girl took off running.
"Sorry about that," he said, giving me napkins.
"Now, I need to go to the bathroom. I'm going to be late for class because of this," I said, wiping wet food off my clothes.
"That was Lorelei, Lauren's little sister. She's in 9th year."
"Following in big sister's foot steps, I see."
I went to the bathroom. I took my time. I was already late, anyway. I heard whimpering in one of the stalls and I went to check it out.
"Angela?" I knocked on the door. "Is that you?" I heard sobbing.
"Go away, please. I'm fine. It's nothing you should worry about," She said, but she didn't sound okay.
"Angela, I'm already late. I don't mind hanging around for you. I won't go at all."
"I guess you don't care about having a perfect attendance record."
"Not my thing."
She opened the door and it smelled like vomit. I sniffed her.
"Did you throw up in there?"
"I was sick, okay," she said. "Sick people throw up."
"You seemed fine at lunch."
"Why are you asking anyway? Oh my God. He told you, didn't he?"
"Eric told me about your eating disorder. I'm sorry, I was just concerned, that's all."
"Don't be, okay. I'm fine."
"You're not fine. You just purged in the toilet."
She turned away and went to the sink to wash her face.
"Some people don't realize how easy they have it," she mumbled. The bell rang, making us both officially late for class.
"I got to go!" I panicked.
"You said you'd stay with me," She said, stopping me.
"This is skipping."
"How often do you skip class?"
"As often as I need," she said.
"Don't you get in trouble?"
"No. All you have to do afterwards, is write a nice letter to the teacher explaining why you didn't show and you're forgiven."
"Just like that? It's that easy?"
"I just don't want anyone to call my dad," I said. "I should go."
"Fine. Suit yourself," she said. "Eric and I are going to the theater tonight. You want to come with us?"
"Yeah. Just give me a call."
She nodded, and I left for history. I walked into class fifteen minutes late. My teacher, Mr. Greyson glared at me until I took my seat.
After school, I couldn't find Angela anywhere, but I figured she'd be with Ben. I drove home and found Charlie half asleep on the couch and the tv on football. There was a note on the kitchen table.
Jacob called. Said to call him back.
"Finally," I thought out loud. I was getting ready to meet Angela and Ben when the phone rang. I raced to the kitchen.
"Hello. Jake?" I said, too soon.
"It's Angela. Who's Jake?" she giggled.
"Um. Just a friend."
"Are you ready?"
"Almost. I'll be there."
"Cool. Just checking up."
We hung up. It was dark by the time I chose an outfit and was out the door. I drove my sputtering truck down a wet road, headlights bright. A dark shadow flashed across my windshield and fell. I slammed my foot on the breaks. When the truck finally stopped, my body flew into the steering wheel and the dashboard.
I opened the door and got out of the truck, quickly. I looked around. I thought I had hit something like a deer, but there was nothing there. Then, I heard the strangest groan. The hairs on the back of my neck were standing up. I turned around and looked back and saw a man lying in the middle of the road.
I ran to help him.
"I am so sorry. I didn't see you, I swear!"
He wasn't moving. "I'll call 911!"
I ran back to my truck and got my phone. "Hello. This is an emergency. I accidentally hit a man with my truck." As I was talking, I looked back to check on the man... but, he was gone. Baffled, I looked all around me. He just vanished. The air around me got colder. It didn't feel right. Scared, I hopped back in my truck, closed the door, and made sure both doors were locked. I know I didn't imagine him. I hit him. My phone rang, and I jumped so high that I bumped my head on the roof of the truck. I answered it, and it was Angela calling to see if I had left the house, yet.
"Yeah. I'm on my way," I assured her. I looked in the rear view mirror, suddenly, and saw a pair of red eyes staring back at me. "Ah!"
"Bella, what's wrong?" Angela's voice said over the phone. I got out of the truck and bolted into the forest. I ran because I was being followed. My feet weren't the only ones crushing dead leaves. Someone was chasing me. I was too scared to stop and see who.
Eventually, I got tired enough to slow down. I cursed myself for always ditching gym at my old school. I was tired and trying to catch my breath when I heard the leaves on the ground crinkle. The sound was getting closer to me. I perched up on my hands and knees and looked back.
It was the man from the road. He stopped and leaned against a tree, nonchalantly. My fear was going away, being replaced by short bursts of bliss. It was weird. I got up and something told me to go to him. I was standing in front of him, when he looked me right in the eyes.
"I lost my dinner," he said. "You'll have to do."
He grabbed my chin and I pulled away from him and took off running. I didn't get very far before he swooped down in front of me, forcing me to stop or turn around and go the other way. I just stood there, feeling like dead meat.
"Don't bother running. Your little human feet will never outrun me," he said.
"What do you want?" I cried. "Are you a skin walker?"
"My name is Jasper." He smiled. It wasn't to be nice, though. He was showing off his fangs, rows and rows of shark- like teeth.
"Woah there, Sharky. You don't want to eat me," I said, backing away. "I'm too skinny."
"I don't want to eat you. I just want to drink your blood." His voice was too casual, as if this was a normal, every day thing for him. "Hell. I'll even let you live, if you don't fight me."
"My dad's a cop."
"No more talking."
He stared at me with focused eyes. I suddenly felt lighter and whoozy. It gave me a headache and I fell to the ground. I watched his boots as he moved towards me. He bent down and lifted up my head.
"Think happy thoughts," he said to me. His face was an inch away from my neck when I kicked him in the stomach. It didn't hurt him, just annoyed him.
"Fine. You can die for all I care," he said.
"Not tonight." I poked both of his eyes with my fingers, then I got up and sprinted through the forest while he was screaming. I stopped when I realized I wasn't being chased, or even followed. I started walking backwards, trying to watch my front and my back at the same time, until I reached the road.
The road was bare. My truck must be on the other side of the forest... along with my cell phone. I sucked it up and entered the forest again to get to the other side where my truck was. Terror ran through my veins with each step I took. I'd get there faster if I ran, I thought but that might alert him to where I was. I ran anyway, the fastest I have ever run in my life. And there it was; my truck. Sitting nicely on the side of the road where I left it. I sighed of relief and got inside without thinking. A hand reached over my lap and locked my door. My eyes bucked and I slowly turned my head and saw Jasper sitting comfortably in the passenger seat.
"I think you and I got off to a bad start," he said. I just looked at him, screaming my head off.