Jacob and Bella are framed for murder and run away together. Edward is a detective who tries to bring them to justice, as the real killer is still loose in Forks and has Edward marked as its next victim. Can Bella save Det. Cullen and clear their names, as an invisible force terrorizes the innocents in Forks?
Sirens and flashing lights swirled around my head. Flashbacks from after the party at Charlie’s zoomed in and out in front of my eyes. I had a throbbing headache that was killing me. I remembered my hands, they had blood on them. That was after the fight. I looked at them now and they’re clean. Could I …?
“Miss Swan, Det. Cullen would like to speak to you.” An officer with bleak grey eyes and silver hair was standing over me. He helped me off the front porch of Charlie’s house and we went inside. Charlie was on a stretcher, inside a body bag. I peeked over at him as they zipped him up. I winced and threw myself on the nearest person. Someone rubbed my shoulder. I looked up at the officer’s green eyes and disheveled bronze hair.
“Bella Swan?” he asked, with remorseful, soft eyes. I gulped, unable to form a simple sentence. “I’m Det. Cullen. I know this is a hard time for you, but I must ask you some questions about your father. Was it you who called the police?”
Oh crap. I’m so going to jail.
“Miss Swan, I need you to speak for me, if you can,” he said, softly. I nodded, again, and swallowed. Then, managed a few words.
“I called the police.”
“Were you the only one here with Charlie?” His brows bent down, and I knew where he was headed. What should I say? Should I lie? Should I tell the truth? Either way I’m screwed.
“I- I- I don’t remember,” I stammered. He sighed heavily. Oh crap. I’m such a bad liar.
“Miss Swan, please. What happened here,” he urged. "Every minute you stall, the killer gets farther away. I don't have time for this."
“The- There was a fight.” I nodded. “Yeah. That’s right.”
“What was the fight about?”
“Charlie and my boyfriend got into an argument.” I winced. Had I said too much?
He nodded. “Keeping going.”
“Then, things got physical.” I looked around at the broken lamp and the slashes in the couches. Things sure did get physical.
“Who started the fight, the physical one?” he asked.
I hesitated. His eyes narrowed. I could tell he wanted to slap the cuffs on me so badly at this point. “I- I don’t re-“
“Don’t lie to me,” he hissed.
“I’m not!” I bucked my eyes.
“Are you protecting your boyfriend?”
I pulled away from him, outraged. “Jacob would never hurt Charlie.”
I zipped my lips.
“Don’t worry. You don’t have to say anything else. We know how to find people.” Edward pulled out a walky-talky. He radioed another officer. My face turned white. I didn’t know what else to do, so I bolted for the door. “Hey!” Edward shouted. “Stop her!”
I dodged the old, grey officer and ran to my truck. I got inside and drove down the dark road to LaPush. As I knocked on Billy’s door, my knees buckled.
“Come on, Jake,” I panicked. I banged on the door some more. It finally opened and it was Jacob’s sister, Rachel on the other side.
“Bella, what’s wrong?” she asked.
“I need to see Jake.” I passed her and went to his room. He opened the door and pulled me inside. Then, he shut the door behind me.
“How is Charlie? Did you tell him I was sorry?” Jacob asked.
“Jake, Charlie’s dead.”
“What? I just saw him two hours ago.”
“He’s dead, Jake,” I snapped. Jacob froze for a minute.
“How? What happened?”
I couldn’t speak. I just stared at him like an idiot. He put his hands on my shoulders and bore his eyes into me.
“Bella, what did you do?”
“Me?” I yelled. “You think I did something to Charlie?”
“Well, what happened after I left?”
“I don’t know what to say,” I started to break down. “The police are at my house. With the way things look, I could be blamed for this.
“Well, did you do it?”
“Then, who did?”
“I don’t know. I was in my room. When I came back down stairs Charlie was dead,” I screeched. “He’s dead. My father is dead, Jacob.” My tears blurred the sight before me. Jacob reached for me and wrapped his arms around me, pulling me close.
“We’ll figure this out,” he mumbled against my earlobe. I nodded, unable to stand on my own. He supported my weight, so that I wouldn't slip to the floor.
"Who could have done this?" I mumbled against his bare chest.
Chapter 11 Meeting
I was laying down in Jacob's bed when I heard shouting and screaming. Jacob and I jumped out of the bed and ran to the living room. Eric was screaming his head off.
"Eric, Eric, what's wrong?!" I yelled. I touched his shaky arm.
"Tyler's gone. That damn thing took Tyler!"
"Who took him? What did you see? Did you see the guy's face?" Jacob asked. Eric shook his head no as he trembled. His skin was unusually white. "Man, you're really freaked out."
"It wasn't... It wasn't a..."
"Spit it out!" I said.
"Eric, what happened?"
"I think he needs to sit down." I pulled Eric onto the sofa and rubbed his shaking hands. Jacob touched my shoulder and felt that I was shaking too. "Eric, talk."
"I was sleeping on the floor in the sleeping bag." He pointed to Jacob's blue sleeping bag that he was borrowing. "I woke up suddenly because I heard a little noise. I wiped my blurry eyes so that I could see better. And there was... there was...-"
"There was what?" I asked. Eric's eyes were big and wobbly.
"A ghost," he said, sounding unsure of himself.
"A ghost?!" Jacob threw his hands up as if that was ridiculous. I shushed him.
"Yes, bush boy. A ghost," Eric shot at him.. "She was leaning over Tyler, just munching on him like a cannibal."
Jacob and I stood back, in horror.
"She?" I asked.
"It was a female ghost," Eric explained. "I started screaming and she picked up Tyler and ran out the front door."
"Jacob, go get him some water," I said, trying to get Eric to stop trembling so much. When Jacob came back, I took a sip first, before handing the glass to Eric.
"So, our killer is now a cannibalistic ghost," Jacob said, folding his arms.
"You don't believe me?" Eric snapped.
"We believe you," I said, trying to stop a fight before it started. Jacob looked at me like I was crazy. "Tell me more about what you saw. What did she look like?"
"She was really pale. She was paler than you, Bella."
I rolled my eyes. "Keep going."
"And she had really dark hair, and there was blood all over her face; Tyler's blood..." He zoned out. "Tyler's gone. I'm never going to see him again. He's dead and I'm next." Eric was working himself into a sweat. "I'm next on the list."
"You need to breathe," I said, coaching. A noise rattled us all. We looked up and saw Rachel staring at us. Jacob went to his sister. I sat next to Eric and got my arms around him. He burst out in tears. "We're going to make it through this. Don't you worry."
"You keep saying that and someone always dies."
I looked at him, not knowing what to say to that. "At least we're putting up a fight."
"We're putting up a fight... by hiding in Jacob's house."
I thought for a moment and staying here was a bad idea considering Jacob's family was here too. "You're right about that. We shouldn't be here. We should go somewhere else."
Jacob came back without Rachel. "She wanted to know what was going on. She's in her room, now."
"We were just leaving. I didn't realize what an inconvenience this would be." I looked around for my jacket. Jacob pulled me towards him.
"It's not. You guys are safe here."
"But, you sister isn't and neither is Billy."
"They're not on a serial killer's hit list," Eric huffed. "I think they'll be fine."
"We need to get going," I said. I found my jacket in Jacob's room. Eric followed me, reluctantly to the front door.
"I'm going with you guys," Jacob said. I glared at him. "I'm not leaving you alone so just accept it."
"Yeah, the more the merrier..." Eric groaned.
I cupped his face. "Jake, you can't come with us. It's too risky." He didn't respond. He stared at me with defiance. Eric and I walked out the door. The air was so foggy, I could barely see my truck.
"Oh this is just fantastic," Eric moaned. "I can't see a damn thing. I can't see a damn thing."
"Be quiet. You're making me nervous," I said, carefully going down the porch steps, ignoring the bright red trail of blood that was on the ground. I was glad that Eric hadn't looked down and noticed it. We made it inside my truck and I turned on the heat.
"Where exactly are we going?"
"To my house."
"To your house?" Eric bucked his eyes. "Where your father was murdered."
"I don't see you coming up with any ideas," I mumbled, starting the engine. We were barely outside of La Push when my engine started convulsing. It sputtered and a cloud of black smoke tented the windows for a moment.
"Perfect," I said, dryly. Eric shook his head. We got out to check the engine.
"Your dad was the chief of police and you're rolling around in this piece of junk."
"Cops don't make that much money, Eric."
He popped the front lid and a nasty smell oozed out. "Oh my God. That wreaks!"
I covered my nose and leaned in to see what was making that smell. I could hardly see so I felt around inside the engine. My hands found something soft and squishy... and cold. Confused, I kept touching until I felt something round and my fingers were tangled in what had to be hair. I yanked my hand out and squealed.
"What it is?" Eric asked. I covered my mouth and shook my head at him. He leaned into the engine.
"Don't touch it," I said. He stopped and looked at me. "I think it's Angela."
His eyes bucked and he jumped back in a weird wiggly motion. He started crying loudly.
"Pull it together, Eric. Help me get her out," I said.
"I'm not touching anything in there!"
"You have to or we're stranded," I said, sternly.
He straightened up and reached his hands inside the engine to help me pull out the body. It was stuffed in there good and took us forever to get it out. Every now and then Eric seemed like he was about to throw up. We dragged her to a marshy area in the woods. I looked into Angela's dead, opened eyes and realized this could have easily been me. Eric and I said a prayer and then ran back to the truck on the side of the road.
"Our fingerprints are all over her."
"It doesn't matter, now. Let's go," I said, swinging the door open.
We made it to my house without any problems. Seeing the chalky outline of my father's murder in the kitchen area brought flashbacks of the night I found him dead. I kept seeing blood on my hands.
"We're sitting ducks," Eric complained, breaking up my vision. "We need to go to the police." He paced around.
"The police aren't going to believe your cannibal ghost lady story, Eric."
"It's what we should have done in the beginning. Tyler would still be here with us. - Oh, God. I can't stop thinking about Angela!"
"Will you shut the hell up?" I shouted. Just then, a door slammed. We jumped and grabbed onto each other. Somebody just came into the house, the back way. I held my breath. We got up and briskly walked to the front door as quietly as we possibly could.
Outside, we dipped towards the truck and stopped in our tracks when we saw a guy leaning on the bumper, twirling a set of keys in his hand. I felt my pockets and my keys weren't there.
"Who the hell are you?" Eric said. Sly baby blue eyes looked up from under blonde side-swiped bangs. He grinned. "Holy..."
"Cody?" I asked.
"Hello, Bella. Hello, Eric," he said, his voice smooth like butter. I didn't remember his voice ever being that smooth. Cody had a horrible stutter. It was one of the many reasons he got bullied so much.
"Alive," he finished Eric's sentence. "No thanks to you." He shot Eric an icy glare, a stare as cold as death. Every instinct in my bones told me to run, but I was frozen where I was. "The three of us are going to go somewhere and I'm going to make a little trade."
"A trade?" I asked.
"We're being chased," Eric said. "So, if you don't mind..."
"You can stop running. You've found me." Cody opened his arms and smirked. It clicked. But, all I could think was...
"You murdered my father!" I shouted. I hit him and he grabbed my wrist and pinned me down against the truck's bumper.
"Don't you hurt her, dammit!" Eric said.
"Get in the truck because I can't carry two people," Cody said. We obeyed. The three of us were crammed in the front seat and Cody had the wheel. I was between them. I stared at his pale skin as he put my key into the ignition.
"Why are you so cold?" I asked. "What are you?"
Cody chuckled. "I'm reborn."
great update! can't wait to read your next one!
Chapter 12 Monster
He was driving pretty fast.
“How can you see through this fog?” I asked, squinting the hell out of my eyes. Cody just smiled. It sent shivers down my spine. Though he was gorgeous now, something was definitely off about him… besides the fact that he died last year. Eric squeezed my hand, fearful. “Where are you taking us?”
“Enough with all the questions,” Cody said. “You’ll find out soon.”
“I want to know now!” I said. Eric squeezed my hand harder.
“Don’t upset him,” Eric murmured in my ear. Nervously, he bounced his knee. We came upon a large warehouse. Cody stopped the truck and made us get out. The doors were bolted shut and Cody opened them with ease. There were no lights, but just enough moonlight seeping in through the many windows that we could see clearly. An unconscious man sat tied to a chair. He was in a nice suit and had messy bronze hair. I immediately recognized him.
“Don’t!” Cody put his hand out in front of me. “touch him.” Eric slinked up against a wall. I knew he was thinking about escaping, with or without me.
“What is going on? What did you do to him?” I shouted.
“There is something you need to know about me,” Cody said. “Before things go any further. When you, Jessica and everyone else thought I was dead, I was. Until this guy came along.” Cody took a pocket knife and ran its edge along Det. Cullen’s jaw line. “He was my angel. When he found me, he gave me the greatest gift I have ever gotten; Life. So you see he’s like a father to me.”
“I don’t understand.” I shook my head.
Cody smiled, stretching his lips to show off the bright, sharpness his teeth possessed. My breath got stuck in my throat. I heard a gasp from Eric. “I have been made vampire, and I’ve been enjoying every second of it.”
“Vampire,” Eric breathed. “Vampires don’t exist.”
“Oh they do, my friend.” Cody looked at me. “Bella, you don’t have to suffer the same fate as the others, if you’d just remember the good times you and I shared—“
“Cody,” I cut him off.
“Oh my God,” Eric sighed. “You’re not still in love with her, are you? Dude, Bella never loved you. She was playing you. We all did.”
I shot Eric a warning glare. “But, we never meant for anything bad to come from it. We’re sorry.”
“I know all about your stupid prank.” Cody rolled his eyes. “Being vampire has its perks. Bella, you and I had something special. I knew deep down you were nothing like the others, and you were just trying to fit in- just like I was.”
“Cody, you and I were always just friends.”
His face hardened. “Bella, you kissed me. Remember that?”
“I know I did some stupid things at Jessica’s party. I never meant to lead you on-“
“Lead me on?” Cody laughed. “Well none of that matters now, because regardless, I will have you.”
I stepped back until I was beside Eric. “It’ll all work out. I’ll have my revenge on you all and get the girl I’ve been in love with since freshman year.”
Edward groaned and moved his head a little bit. “What does he have to do with any of this?” Eric asked.
“Don’t you worry about Det. Cullen. I’m just holding him for a friend,” Cody said. “It’s part of my trade.”
“What trade?” I shouted.
“This witchy vampire is going to give me a rose that is going to make you fall in love with me and all I have to do is deliver her Edward.” Cody put the knife back to Det. Cullen’s face.
“That is so wrong.”
“What’s wrong is dying before your time. What’s messed up is being killed by people you trusted!”
“Cody, I think you know we never meant for you to get hurt. Alright, we did mean to hurt you in the beginning, but your death was a complete accident,” I said. “You have to know that. We took things too far and I wanted to say something but I was afraid to go against my friends... When you took that backward step and fell off that cliff, we all thought our lives would be over.”
“Still only thinking of your selves, eh?”
“It wasn’t like that.”
“No one thought to jump in after me? Huh, swim team captain?” He looked at Eric. “I thought you guys were so cool and I just wanted to hang out with you. But, now, you’re as good as dead to me.”
“The water was freezing, Cody. It was winter and anybody in that lake would have frozen to death,” Eric said. “We couldn’t save you.”
“No, you couldn’t. Keeping my death a secret was obviously the better option. Some of you told people that you never even saw me that night!”
“We were stupid kids, Cody. We were afraid we’d get blamed for it,” I said. “You have every right to be angry, but this is extreme. Just let us go.”
“Yeah, just let us go,” Eric said. “We won’t tell anyone about this.”
“Yeah, because no one is going to believe you anyway,” Cody said. It happened in a matter of seconds. Cody moved so fast, he was a blur. When I looked up, he was holding up Eric’s head by the dark brown hair. I screamed. Eric’s decapitated body fell over and blood poured out from the severed neck. He held the head towards my face.
“You have a choice to make, Bella. Become like me, or become like them.” Cody tossed Eric’s head to the side like it was nothing. “All your loyal friends are dead. Choose well.” He pushed my keys into my trembling hand.
“You’re letting me go?” I asked.
“I’ll always find you, so don’t worry.”
I cringed as his cold lips brushed against my cheek. “You have until tomorrow night to decide.”
“It doesn’t seem like much of a decision,” I said, with dry sarcasm. He laughed.
“You’re right. It’s not. But, you’ll humor me.”
“You are sick.”
I ran out of the warehouse to my truck. For an hour, I didn’t know where I was driving. I had no plan, nowhere to go or hide. LaPush was not an option anymore because no one there should be caught in the crossfire.
Vampires and magic flowers… What next, werewolves? Just then, a huge furry animal jumped out in front of my truck. It snarled. It was a wolf the size of a horse.
“Ah!” I slammed on the weak breaks, and my front wheels rolled over something, finally coming to a stop. I got out and was confused because the giant wolf wasn’t there anymore. It had vanished. I started to question how sane I was after meeting vampire Cody. Then, I heard some heavy breathing. A hand touched my ankle. I screamed and jumped back. Then, I looked under the truck and found Jacob, tire marks across his sculpted chest. I helped him up.
We stared at each other and I finally spoke. “Jacob, how did you get under there?”
He hesitated. “I’ll explain later.”
“No,” I grabbed his arm. “You’ll explain, now.”
“Alright. I followed you.”
“I told you not to do that.”
“I had to know you were safe,” he said, quickly. He was acting strange.
“Oh my God. How far did you follow me? What did you see?”
“I saw your friend get killed.”
“Get in the truck,” I ordered. When we were inside, I leaned towards him. “That means you know that our killer is-“
A quiet moment passed. “We use to make fun of all those stories my tribe taught us, and now to find out that all that stuff is true is…I don’t know what to do with all of this. I could have easily intervened, but I didn’t. I chickened out. I can’t even help my girlfriend when she needs me. Some Alpha…”
“What did you say?” I stared at him. “I’m glad you didn’t. He would have killed you. And what do you mean by Alpha?”
He sighed and got out of the truck. I got out and went after him.
“I’m sorry if I upset you. It was just a question.”
“I’m not upset,” he said, stopping in a small clearing. “Don’t come any closer. I want to show you something.”
Chapter 13 Protection
I stared off at him curiously. His body suddenly started to contort and change, swiftly. The giant wolf I saw earlier was standing before me now.
“Jake,” I said. But, he couldn’t talk back. He leaned his giant wolf head down and slumped his shoulders. In the animal world, such a stance meant submission. And clearly he wanted me to understand that he was harmless. I reached out and rubbed his cute black nose. While everything else had changed, his warm brown eyes remained the same. I leaned against him, teary. He howled, and then other animals howled in the distance responding to the sudden cry.
When he was human again, I drove him to my house, resisting the urge to ride home piggyback on a giant wolf. Jacob inspected every room in the house before leaving.
“I’ll be back in a few minutes,” he said.
“Where are you going?” I threw myself at him.
“I may need some help. There were two vampires in there.”
“Det. Cullen was tied up. I don’t think he’s helping Cody.”
“But, Cody did mention another vampire. I’ll be back before you know it. I’m sorry about your friends.” He pecked my cheek with a soft kiss, then he headed for the woods.
“Thanks,” I uttered. I went inside and took a knife from the kitchen before heading upstairs to my bedroom. I had been away for so long, it seemed alien to me now. But I hugged my familiar stuffed unicorn I got from one of my childhood Christmases. I won’t be making any decisions for Cody. I won’t have to with Jacob around. There was a knock on the window. I paused, thinking it was Jacob.
I opened it.
I moved back and he crawled through. “How’d you get away from Cody?”
“He may be stronger, but I’m smarter.” He was nursing his arm.
“Are you okay?”
“I’ll be fine. I just twisted my arm. I heal pretty fast so I should be fine.”
I moved him over to my bed and set him down. “Do you want some water or something? You look beat. Hey, why are you here?”
“I came to check on you.”
“I don’t need you to do that. Jacob is watching out for me. And last I checked you didn’t like me very much. You tried to pin all those murders on us.”
“I was protecting my kind.”
“You were protecting that psycho Cody.”
“I was protecting myself, I wasn’t condoning his actions. We have our own police for guys like him. I was keeping humans from getting too close to the truth. Cody doesn’t make it easy. He’s sloppy and unskilled.”
“I’m sorry but you’re not making me feel any better because that’s just creepy.”
“Never mind why I did what I did. You and I are both in danger of losing our free will.”
“Cody wants to make me into his vampire bride, but what does he want with you.”
“Didn’t you hear him? He’s helping an old friend of mine… I use the term ‘friend’ loosely. But, if I know Irina, she’ll go back on her word and betray him. But I shouldn’t take any chances.
If I can keep Cody’s latest actions out of the papers, we won’t have to have a visit from our police.”
“Vampires have their own police.”
“They’re like royalty and they’ll use any excuse to come after me.”
“Why? What did you do?”
“It’s not what I did. I have something they want. They’ll use Cody to get it. I have a very advanced mind.” He stared at me, as if something was wrong with me. “The leader collects vampires like me, vampires with powers. I escaped last time they came, looking to extend their collection, but many of my friends didn’t. Cody doesn’t understand we need to keep them away. He’s too fixated on his revenge.”
“If he cares about you, he’ll stop.”
“He doesn’t care about me. He doesn’t care about anyone. I see that now. I changed him because I felt bad for the kid. I had no idea he was going to turn out like this, a vindictive killer. I treated him like family, and now my whole coven could die because of him.”
“They won’t kill you. If they kill you, they kill your power.”
He chuckled at me. “They don’t need me to use my power. They can take it from me and bottle it for themselves. I’m just a vessel.”
“What is your power anyway?”
“I can read minds.” He looked at me with peculiar eyes. “I never came across a mind I couldn’t read… until I met you.”
“So you can’t hear my thoughts?” I sighed, relieved. He shook his head.
“It’s like you have a lock on it,” he said. “I can’t see inside your head and that makes me nervous.”
“You don’t have to worry about me. I wouldn’t harm a fly,” I said.
“I know,” he chuckled. “A squishy little human like you wouldn’t try to, either.”
I blushed, embarrassed of my predictabilities. I was always too easy to read. Edward turned his head towards the window and stood up.
“That’s just Jacob… I hope,” I said, going to the window. I opened it and we looked down. I bucked at the sight on my lawn. Four big wolves looked up at us. They were silver, dark grey, reddish brown, and brown.
“Which one’s your boyfriend?” Det. Cullen asked. “Nevermind. I figured it out. He’s pretty loud, doesn’t want me to get any funny ideas.”
“He just needs to know you’re cool, Det.”
“Call me Edward.”
“Okay.” I closed the window and went to the front door where four people were waiting; Jacob, Leah, Paul, and Seth. Edward had disappeared from my side. I let them in.
“This sure is a lot of protection for one little girl,” Paul smirked, ruffling up my hair.
“Ew. What’s that stench?” Seth asked, pinching his nose.
“Vampire,” Jacob said, coming behind Seth.
“This better be worth it,” said Leah, the last to enter. “I was on a date… and with a decent guy for once.”
“Are you okay?” Jacob asked, his hands on my shoulders. He sniffed the air.
“It was just Det. Cul… I mean Edward. That’s his first name,” I said.
“Well he sure does need to go home and take a bath,” Seth complained.
“I don’t smell anything,” I said.
“Vampires only smell funny to our kind. To your kind, they probably smell like roses.”
“Roses,” I muttered. “It was beginning to be my least favorite flower…”
"This sure is a lot of protection for one little girl", as Paul said, but it looks like she will need it! I'm glad Edward could escape! Between Irina's magic roses and the Volturi's quest for powers things certainly look grim for Bella and Edward right now. I wonder what they will decide to do? Will the presence of the wolves help to even out the odds? I can't wait to see what happens next!
love the updates! can't wait to see how they handle the cody situation! update again soon please!
Chapter 14 Slipping
I fixed my tie in the men’s room. Rockefeller walked in, a hard look on his face.
“There you are, Det. Cullen. We need to discuss the Red Rose Killer case. Some new information just walked in.”
Just walked in? I looked at him, bizarrely. By his twisted expression and his doubtful thoughts, this didn’t look good for me. I followed him down the hall. I peeked into the interrogation room where a girl was sitting with her hands in her lap. Johns was sitting across the table from her. I went in with Rockefeller. He picked up a newspaper and slammed it on the table in front of the girl causing her to jump.
“For someone as experienced as you in catching serial killers, you sure are messing up a lot,” Rockefeller said.
“Det. Cullen,” Johns interrupted, seeing that he was scaring the girl. “This is Rachel Black. She wants to give a statement for Bella Swan.”
I picked up the newspaper and sighed. Angela Weber’s body was discovered near a swamp, naked and unburied. That’s odd.
“She didn’t do it.” Rachel stood up. “Bella was at my house last night.”
“You’re Jacob Black’s sister, right?” I asked.
“Yes sir. When I saw the paper this morning, I had to come and say something. She is one of my good friends and I know she didn’t kill all those people.”
“Did she talk to you about this case?” I asked.
“No… but, I overheard her talking... Look. I’m just trying to help. My dad and my brother will say the same thing. She was with us and…” Rachel trailed off. Her thoughts were running wild and she wasn’t sure if she was doing the right thing. She was also holding back.
“Was Bella alone?” I asked, trying to get her to admit it herself. Rachel hesitated.
“Yes.” She lied, but I didn’t call her out.
“Two local boys have gone missing,” I said. “What do you know about that?”
“I haven’t heard about it,” she said.
“What boys?” Johns asked. He grabbed the paper from me and flipped it to a page.
“Eric Yorkie and Tyler McClain. Johns and Cullen, don’t you get the morning paper? You should know these things before you come into work,” Rockefeller scolded.
“Sorry, Boss,” Johns said.
“So, now Bella Swan has an alibi in the case of the Weber girl,” Rockefeller said, speaking only to me. “What I don’t understand is… how Angela Weber’s body jumped from the autopsy table in the hospital to a swampy area in the middle of the woods.”
Johns and Rachel bucked their eyes, horrified. Rockefeller stopped. “Thank you, Rachel, for coming down. You can go now.” He led her to the door and put her out. Then, he put his attention back to us. “What do you have to say?”
“Well, someone obviously moved the body,” I said.
“Why would someone do that?” he asked.
I paused. “I have no idea, sir.” My confidence was draining and he could feel it.
“We’ve checked all the doctors and everyone who had access to the body and they’ve all been cleared and now Bella Swan has just been cleared,” he said. I looked to Johns for assistance.
“The real killer moved it,” Johns broke in. I shook my head. He wasn’t helping. “He probably did it to show how good he is. Some killers like to play weird games like that.”
“Well, whatever game he’s playing, he is somewhere laughing his ass off at this joke of an investigation!” Rockefeller stormed. “What the heck are we doing, if we can’t even keep the dead bodies safe, let alone the living? This is your fault, Det. Cullen. You were wrong from the beginning and I should have trusted my gut. The more you chase after Bella Swan, the further away the Red Rose Killer gets. And Bella Swan is not your Red Rose Killer!”
“I’m sorry, Sir. But,-”
“Sorry isn’t going to cut it. You’re off this case as of now. Go back to Juneau and take your impressive resume with you.”
Johns jaw dropped.
“Yes, sir,” I replied. He was fuming and there was nothing else I could say that wouldn’t dig me into a deeper hole. I went to my office and started packing. The door opened slowly and Johns nervously walked in.
“That was intense,” he said.
“I’m really sorry you got fired.”
“Where were you last night?”
“Huh? Oh. The blind date thing. I completely forgot. Johns, I am so sorry.”
“It’s okay.” From the look on his face, I knew that I had crushed Aila’s feelings. I would have been there, if not for Cody kidnapping me.
“You heading straight back to Alaska?”
“No. I think I’ll stick around for a while,” I said.
“Some unfinished business.”
“Good luck to you, Detective,” Johns said.
“Thanks. But, I don’t think I’ll need it.”
Johns laughed. “Great knowing ya.” He left and I continued tossing office supplies and papers into a brown box. My plan completely fell apart thanks to Rachel Black, but it wasn’t her fault Cody decided to play games. Now that I know what he’s after, I’m going to have to make nice with Irina to keep him from getting it. I’m useless to Bella if I’m hexed.
What will he do now?
great update! OMG what is he gonna do now? can't wait to read your next udpate!
Chapter 15 Rescue
I looked up and Aila was standing in the doorway. “Hi, Aila. Can I help you?”
“I heard the news. I’m really sorry. That Rockefeller is a tough cookie. He’s not easy to impress.”
“So I’ve noticed…”
She hesitated before speaking again.”When are you leaving?”
“I haven’t set a date, yet.”
“Well, if you’ve got time, do you think we could do something together?”
“Like what, Aila?”
“Dinner, maybe?” She shrugged. “How about tonight?”
“It’ll have to be some other time.” I winced at how I was making her swallow the hard pill of rejection.
“What about a short coffee break, then. My treat?”
I looked at her and she smiled a little.
“I don’t want to risk bumping into Rockefeller. I think I’ll just head home.” I put on my blazer, picked up my box, and headed out the door. Aila was right on my heel. She came up next to me. “You sure are persistent.”
“One of my many great qualities. I can help you carry some of that stuff.”
“I got it. Thanks.”
When we got to my car, my hands were full. “Can you reach into my pocket and get my keys?” I looked up at the bleak sky while Aila fumbled around in my side pocket. She took out the keys and opened the door for me. But, not before dropping them on the ground. “Thank you.”
“You’re very welcome.” She blushed. She straightened her glasses and stood back. I put my box on the passenger seat and thought for a moment. A little pretend coffee wouldn’t kill me.
“How about that coffee, Ms. Blue? But, it’ll have to be quick.”
She bit her lip and smiled. Then, she ran to the passenger side of the Volvo and got in. She moved the box to her lap. “Maybe you should tail me.”
She shook her head. “I don’t have a car. I walk to work. I live really close by, so it’s fine. Plus, walking is good exercise.”
I glanced at her skinny frame. The veins pulsing through her neck, suddenly reminded me of how thirsty I was. This was going to be a disaster. Aila was in a happy mood and I didn’t want to spoil that. I tried to suck it up.
“I have some Folgers at my loft. Is that okay?”
“That’s great,” she said.
I drove home, aware of the danger I was putting her in and even more aware that Cody could be around. Negative thoughts aside, I tried to be cordial. Once inside, I took a quick look around, then took off my blazer.
“You have good tastes,” she said, her hand gliding across the brown leather loveseat. She really liked the corporate colors.
“No one has ever complimented my boring style before.”
“It’s not boring. Not to me, anyway.”
I moved into the kitchen and plugged up the coffee maker, which has never been used. I tried to look like I knew what I was doing. “Sugar or cream?” I asked. That was just something I heard people say a lot.
“Both,” she said, nervously from the couch in the living room. When I was done, I joined her in the living room with our coffees. I watched her take the first sip.
“How did I do?”
“Pretty good,” she replied. I stared down into my mug at the dark brown liquid. Silence started to creep up on us. She put hers on the table. “I have a confession to make.” I looked up from my coffee. “I like you, detective. A lot. And I didn’t want you to leave without knowing.” I chuckled under my breath. Aila played with her hands. “I have been such a coward, getting Johnny to set me up with you.” She stopped as if she had said too much. She looked up at me as I was trying to contain myself, and she blushed. “And, you’re laughing at me,” she frowned.
“I knew it was you who I was suppose to go on a blind date with,” I confessed.
“Is that why you didn’t show?”
“No,” I insisted. Aila made up her mind that it was a lie. She blushed even harder, embarrassed, then she headed for the door. I reached for her arm and turned her towards me. We ended up closer than I intended.
“You didn’t finish your coffee,” I said.
“I’m full,” she said. I wanted to wipe that frown from her face. I listened intently to her thoughts, trying to find a way. But then, I gave up because that wouldn’t be right. “Have you ever been to Alaska?” I asked.
“No,” she said, eyes big with hope. My phone buzzed in my pocket, making us pause.
“I’m going to answer this and then I’ll drive you home.” I turned to talk on the phone. My back was turned as Aila was easing towards the door. “Hello?”
“What the?” I stared at the phone’s screen. There was a number I didn’t recognize. Who would call and hang up like that? Aila opened the door. I turned around, new thoughts entering the room. A tall blonde man wearing a black robe stared down at Aila.
“Ooh. A snack. Edward, how thoughtful.” He grabbed Aila into his chest and yanked on her ponytail.
“Caius, no!” I shouted. He sank his fangs deep into her neck. She moaned, painfully. Aila’s body dropped to the floor. “Tasty,” Caius cooed. “A little boring, though.”
I moved quickly, picking up Aila’s body and putting it on the couch. “Aro sent me to deal with your problem.” Caius examined his red painted fingernails. “Apparently, you have a little vampire on the loose. Edward, you know what we do to irresponsible parents, so why do you people even bother to take the risk?”
“I don’t have a little vampire problem,” I said, glaring at him.
“Edward, lying does not look good on you. Now, move away from that dead thing and come with me.”
For every step he took towards me, I took one away from him. “We have your sister. That little wench was hard to track down, but I eventually found her hiding in the Carribeans. Perhaps, now you’ll join me back to Volterra?”
“Lying doesn’t look good on you, either, Caius.” I moved the couch between us, and he laughed to himself.
“It was worth a try.” He flew at me, knocking over the couch. He had me pinned to the floor. “Did you really think Aro would send me here unequipped? Allow me to demonstrate our newfound abilities. As you are reading my mind, your power will flow into me and it will become mine. What I choose to do with it is up to me. Now, read, Edward. Read really hard.”
My thumbs were placed in the center of his neck. Mind reading wasn’t something I could turn on and turn off. It was a constant thing. I was a goner. I struggled against him. His forehead crinkled and he yelled out in pain. “The only downside to power transferring is it hurts like damn hell,” Caius breathed on me. My brain felt like it had been set on fire. “Keep… reading. Almost… there. Aah!” Caius screamed. I bucked my eyes at the axe planted in his head. He toppled over, dead.
Bella Swan was shaking profusely, blood was splattered on her white shirt. “I tried to call you,” her voice trembled.
“How’d you get in here?”
“Edward, your door was wide open.”
“Why do you have an axe!?”
“It’s for emergencies, vampire emergencies. Jacob gave it to me.”
“Well, keep hitting him with it, in case he tries to wake up,” I advised. I checked on Aila, while Bella went to town on Caius with an axe. Not wanting to start a fire in my expensive loft, I gathered some trash bags to put Caius’ body parts in. We got in the Volvo.
“What are you doing here in the middle of the day?” she asked.
“Fasten your seatbelt,” I warned. She wasn’t listening, so I buckled it for her. “I lost my job.”
“What were you doing at my loft?”
“I was looking for Cody.”
“You got guts, Swan.”
“Thanks,” she blushed.
I hit the gas. “Where are your werewolf friends?”
“We split up to look for Cody. Actually, they split up to look for him. I was supposed to stay at the house in hiding. Leah was watching me. We thought it was unfair that we had to stay behind and they do all the work. So, we bounced. She’s going to be pissed that I ditched her, though. I thought the best place to look for Cody would be your place.”
“Although brave, that was very dangerous and stupid. What if he was there and you found him, alone?”
“He would have gotten some of my axe, just like that one in your trunk.”
I chuckled. “Caius is an elder. He’s not that hard to kill.”
“You seemed to be having a tough time...” She rolled her eyes toward the window and looked out.
“Ouch. I'm going to need some ice for that burn."
That was a narrow escape! I can't wait to see what happens next!