THE DAY BEFORE YOU
Hi there I know you don’t know me, but I would like to tell you a story; it is a love story about a boy and a girl of pain heartache, hope, love, life and death. I have known everyone in this story at some point in time. I feel that their stories deserve to be told.
There once was a little girl named Bella, who had been left alone to grow up with her ill equipped, withdrawn and sad father, Charlie. Bella knew that he loved her, she could see it in the way he tucked her into bed at night, the way he held her hand as he walked her to and from school and the way he held her close as if she might disappear if he ever let her go. In truth Bella was the only good thing left in his life and she alone was what he lived for. As Bella grew Charlie would sadly watch as she left the house; he was always waiting for the day she left and never came home taking with her his one reason for waking up each morning.
Bella was a quiet lonely little girl who did not make friends easily. She had two friends Angela Weber and Jacob Black. Bella sometimes wished for a different life, not a better life, just a different one. She longed for a place where the sun shined bright and she could twirl with arms stretched to the sky. A place where it never rained and all she needed was a good book and the sun on her bare arms was enough to keep her warm.
Bella was the girl picked last for PE, home studying instead of attending the school football game or homecoming dance. She was uncoordinated and tripped over her own two feet. She didn’t play or understand sports. She was shy and tended to stay to herself and she was always the butt of the other kid’s jokes. Bella never took it to heart she knew they picked on her to make themselves feel better about their own faults and shortcomings. So this was Bella’s life.
She had one procession that she kept close to her heart it was a picture of her mother and father on their wedding day. She looked at it every night before going to bed. She would trace her mother’s smiling face with the tip of her finger and marvel at the way her dad looked at her mother. That look was one of pure joy, love and hope. She prayed every night before bed that one day she would find someone who would look at her just like that. She would then put the picture back under her pillow and drift off to sleep. She would float off to a land where the sun shined bright and she twirled with her mom and no rain ever fell.
Somewhere that could have been a million miles away but was really only an hour’s drive away; there lived a boy named Edward. He was a very beautiful boy, yes I said beautiful for there really wasn’t any other word to describe him. He had the face of an angel and the heart of the devil. He had bronze hair that constantly fell in his eyes. His eyes were a golden brown the color of warm butterscotch on most day s but then sometimes they would be pitch black like a storm on the rise. Then as quickly as the storm passed he could dazzle you with a flash of his crooked smile. When he had a good day he could blow you away with that smile and those indescribable sparkling eyes. Unfortunately his good days were few and far between. He sometimes felt as if he didn’t really fit in with his family. He often felt like the odd man out. He lived with Carlisle and Esme Cullen the parental figures of the family; they loved each other so much that you could see it and feel it in everything they did. Edward knew that if they woke up tomorrow and had only each other that they would be okay. Then there was his adopted sister Alice and her husband Jasper. They were amazing to watch as they knew each other so well that words weren’t necessary. They just had to look at each other to know what the other was thinking and it was as if no one else was in the room. It was truly amazing.
Lastly there was his other sister Rosalie and her husband Emmet. Rose was beautiful almost like a goddess. She was also self centered, selfish and rude. However she also had a love for her husband Emmet that ran so deep and true that you forgot her flaws. She had this undying love and loyalty for him.
Emmet was a huge beast of a guy who towered over everyone around him. At first glance everyone was terrified of him, until he smiled and his face transformed into a cuddly teddy bear. He was loud, rowdy and loved to have fun but above all he loved Rose faults and all.
Edward often felt out of place in his own home being surrounded by such happy people. He wondered if he would ever find someone he could call his own, someone who would love him above all else, someone who would complete him and make him whole. He longed to find a love of his to know what it felt like to be someone’s everything.
The chances of this boy and this girl finding one another, was one in a million but fate has a funny way of working things out. Somehow this boy connected with this girl and things just somehow seemed to work out.
Bella and Edward had met and fallen hopelessly in love. Things weren’t all roses and hearts but they weathered the storms that raged against them and came out better for it. Bella found her mother and finally seemed to have everything she ever wanted. Her best friends Angela and Jacob seemed to have been drawn together and seemed happy to be only with each other. She wasn’t sure how she felt about that but she really hadn’t had time to think about it yet. The only thing that seemed to be bothering Bella was telling her father about the arrival of her dead mother. She knew that they desperately loved one another but how would she ever get them together again? And how would she explain the fact that her boyfriend, his family and her mother were all vampires? And let’s not forget that her best friend was a shape shifter, Bella had a long road ahead of her and she had no idea how or where to begin her new journey.
It had been four months since she had been to Italy to save everyone she loved and herself from the Volturi. She had found more strength than she had thought possible and she with the help of her dead mother had defeated the powerful group of evil, blood thirsty and arrogant vampires. Well not really defeated they were still there and could get reinforcements and come back but that was something that they hoped would not happen for many years. Jasper was also making contingency plans just in case.
For the most part Bella was happy except that she hated lying to her dad. She knew he was trying to be more involved in her life but why now? Did he sense that there were things she didn’t tell him like her mom was here living with the Cullen’s and that her Edward and his family were not human? She wished she could tell him everything but would he understand? She wasn’t sure that he would be able to accept this underworld that seemed so unbelievable but was all too real.
So this is where our story begins. The story of such amazing love that no one would ever have imagined but were always meant to be. Bella and Edward, Renee and Charlie and Angela and Jake and maybe a few more thrown in; what will the fates have in store for each of them now?
I was sitting with Angela in last hour PE today was the day we got to listen to Ms Nichols, aka Coach T, talk about STD’s and how having premarital sex could only end badly. Angela and I rolled our eyes toward the ceiling wondering how she could stand in front of so many teenage boys and not feel completely stupid. I glanced at the clock on the wall and sighed in relief only ten more minutes and this torture would be over. Angela and I had made plans to go shopping after school for the homecoming dance. I really wasn’t that excited about the dance because I can’t dance but Edward seemed to be determined that we go. So here I was going shopping with Ang, Alice and Rose after school. The guys were going to go hunting and would probably not be home until Friday and today were only Tuesday. I hated it when Edward was away for that long but I knew it was a necessity. I was brought back to reality with the ringing of the final bell.
“Thank God that is finally over.”
I nodded my head in agreement with Ang as we began to stretch and work the kinks out of our backs from sitting so long.
“I know right. Okay so I am heading home and I know Jake will be waiting outside for you but please do not be late Alice will kill you. Be at my house at 3 no later than 3:30.”
“Why the extra 30 minutes?”
“Because Ali will have to redress me and you know she loses all track of time.”
We both started laughing as Ang took off running to go meet Jake outside.
I grabbed my back pack and headed to my locker to exchange my health book and The Benefits of Abstinences pamphlets for my battered copy of Romeo and Juliet. I was about to slam the door shut when I felt someone grabbing me from behind and pulling me close. I leaned into the embrace knowing that it was Edward.
“Hey you, how was Spanish?”
“Boring, how was sex Ed with Coach T?”
“Oh I learned a lot about why not to have sex, as if I had to worry about that.”
“Bella we have been through this before you know why I can’t even think about that.”
“Yeah I know and it’s ok, I think about it enough for both of us. I just wish I didn’t have to sit there and listen to all the reasons that don’t apply to me. Okay so when are you guys leaving?”
“Any minute I just wanted to walk you out and say bye and for the record I do think about you in that way too. Love there has never been anyone else and there never will be so I do understand how you feel, trust me.”
“I’m sorry for sounding so selfish and I know it’s just hard for you so let’s just forget about it for now.”
I took his hand as we walked down the hall. I couldn’t keep myself from staring at him from the corner of my eye. I still couldn’t believe that he was mine forever sometimes I would think that it was all some crazy dream or a cruel joke and one day I would wake up alone or he would tell me that he never loved me at all. I know I sound completely insane but bad things always seem to happen to me.
“Hey are you okay Bella?”
I blinked my eyes in surprise we had made it to my truck and I suppose he had been talking to me. I smiled and nodded my head yes.
“I ‘m good sorry I was daydreaming.”
I could see the questions in his eyes and an amused smile playing on his lips. I was lost in his gaze and had to focus to put two words together coherently.
“Well sort of but not really, anyways it doesn’t even matter. So what were you saying before I zoned out on you?”
“I was telling you how much I was going to miss you and to have fun with the girls.”
“Yeah I will except I am not looking forward to Bella Barbie.”
I could hear his deep laughter floating in the air. He knew how overzealous Alice could be when it came to fashion, hair, makeup and accessories.
“I’m sorry but it will be fun and you know it. So promise me you will be careful until we get back no sneaking around or meetings with werewolves?”
“I promise but Angela and Jake will be coming over some so don’t get all worked up. Jake is more calm now with Angela around he would never do anything to hurt her.”
I could see Edward’s forehead wrinkled in thought and worry.
“Yeah I am sure that was what Emily thought about Sam too.”
I knew Edward was right about that but the time; place and circumstances had been entirely different. I was sure that nothing like that would happen with Jake and Angela.
“Edward please don’t worry about me. I will be fine and if it makes you feel better I will ask Alice to come over while Jake is there.”
“Fine but promise you will take care of my heart.”
“I will if you promise the same.”
I could see Emmett and Jasper walking across the parking lot with Rose and Alice. I leaned into Edward and kissed him solidly on the lips while tangling his hair in my fist. I wanted to make sure he thought about me and missed me as much as I was going to miss him. As far as thinking about him, well he had the center stage in the deep crevices of my mind. I loved him and I found myself wondering how I ever got along without him. I reluctantly released my hold on him as I felt Alice pulling me away. I smiled at Edward as he flashed the crooked smile that melted my heart and took my breath away.
“Bella come on we have things to do and places to be so let’s get moving. I will follow you home and then you and Angela can ride with us to the mall. Hurry up.”
“Okay I am leaving. “
I waved at Edward and the guys as he was helplessly being pulled to Emmett’s jeep. I saw him manage to break free and run back to the open door of my truck, he leaned in and gave me a quick kiss the cheek and whispered in my ear, “I love you Bella, please be safe and take care of you.”
I held him for a second before Em and Jazz came back to drag him to the jeep. I laughed at the sight of the three of them making complete fools of themselves as if no one else was even around.
Thank you so much and I am so glad you love it. More coming soon.
Hi Tonya thanks for reading and more coming soon.
Thanks I am so glad you liked it.
I had listened to my mom tell me of her past and what it meant for my immediate future and it was more than I could comprehend. I was a freak and I was alone. I wondered how she thought she could keep this from me forever. I was a shape shifter and a cold one and immortal. I was my own natural enemy, how in the hell was that even possible? I began to pace the room and try to figure out how I felt at this moment in my life.
I looked at my mother as she continued to speak words that I could no longer hear. She was my mom, my safe haven and my everything. It had always been me and mom and that had been fine with me but now I realized that there were two whole other worlds that I was destined to be a part of. I had been so overwhelmed with my own problems that I hadn’t really noticed when the front door was pushed open with no warning. I looked up to see the most beautiful creature I had ever laid eyes on. I couldn’t move or speak I was in total awe and I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. She was talking faster than a speeding bullet and I had no idea what she was babbling about; all that matter from that moment on was her. I could see her curious eyes taking in my appearance and then she laid her hand over her heart. I hadn’t realized that at that precise moment I too was clutching my chest it was as if our hearts were trying to tell us something that our minds couldn’t comprehend.
I could see her moving toward me and I began to drift forward to meet her half way. I was totally wrapped up in her and I was no longer concerned about the story of my life. It was like my life was just beginning right here, right now with her. I struggled to find my voice to say something eloquent and profound but the words alluded me. She raised her head a fraction and I nodded as we began to walk to the door and outside away from the watchful eye of Lillian and my mother.
“Hey I’m Leah.”
I felt my heart swell at just the sound of her voice and the beauty of her name. I reached out and took her hand in mine and led her to the front steps. We sat and continued to stare at each other like a couple of blind men who were seeing the sun for the first time. I just couldn’t get past the feeling of completeness. I hadn’t realized that what I had been waiting for was right here in La Push and that it had never been Angela. I felt a guilty tug at my heart as I thought of Angela and how I had vowed to love her forever. I began to wonder about this Jacob guy and if maybe this is what had happened to them. I realized that Leah was watching me waiting for a response.
“Sorry I was trying to make sense of all the craziness that has happened in the last hour. My name is Ben and Lillian is my grandmother.”
“Oh well it’s really nice to meet you Ben.”
“Believe me the pleasure is all mine.”
Leah looked away in embarrassment for a second and then she was looking at me again. I could get lost in the depths of her black eyes. She was like an exquisite gem that deserved to be cherished above all else.
“So Ben where exactly are you from? I never knew that Lillian had a grandson.”
I knew that it was going to be a shocker for the Quileute tribe to learn of my existence and my peculiar lineage. I wondered what they would think of me and my mom. I still needed the answers that only my father could give me. I needed to know how he had been changed and why he sought my mother even after the transformation. I must be going crazy was I seriously buying into all this craziness? I glanced at Leah and knew that yes I was.
“I’m not surprised by that it seems she and my mother had a falling out before I was even a blimp on the radar. We live in Forks.”
Leah looked at me as if she were studying my ever gesture and expression. I was distracted by the way her hair blew in the cool night air. She was the only thing that could hold my attention. I wondered if she knew how she was affecting me.
“So you go to Forks High School then?”
“Yeah but I was thinking maybe I might ask Lillian if I could stay here for a while.”
Leah nodded her head in agreement and continued to watch my every move. She inched closer to me and I could feel her knee press against mine. I was surprised by the sensations that were running rapid through my body. I was a little nervous and wondered if she felt the same way. I raised my eyes to gaze into her dark pupils and knew that she felt exactly the same.
“Well that would be great but what about your mom?”
I knew that I should consider her feelings but in all honesty I was tired of doing all the giving. I knew I needed time to deal with all this and that I needed to learn about my heritage. I would have to deal with my father at some point and I wondered if my mother knew where he was. I would deal with that later.
“I think my mom is old enough to take care of herself. Besides I graduate in a few months and then its college so I would be gone anyway.”
Leah looked a little disappointed by the fact that I would be leaving soon. I found myself thinking if maybe college was really that important after all. I mean really what could college possibly teach a hybrid shape shifter slash vampire boy? I would definitely have to rethink my future plans but not tonight. Tonight I would deal with what was going on right in front of me. I realized that I had no idea what had brought Leah here tonight.
“So I was a little distracted when you barged in earlier, so what exactly brought you here?”
She looked at me and paused for a minute before answering my question, “Well I was telling Lillian that Sam caught the scent of a blood sucker and that he was getting they pack together.”
I looked at her as if I had no clue what she meant by the word pack. I waited for her to explain.
“The wolf pack all the Quileute’s who have inherited the gene for shape shifting.”
“Wow this is so weird. So how many member of the wolf pack are there?”
She seemed to be checking off a mental list in her head as she spoke, “Well let’s see there’s Sam, he is the alpha although that honor should have went to Jake but he declined. He’s mad about being part of the pack at all much less the leader.”
I knew it Jacob Black was part of this bizarre messed up underworld of demons and goblins. I would have to deal with him sooner than I had thought.
“You mean Jacob Black?”
She looked at me as if I had spoken French and I waited with bated breath for her to answer the innocent question.
“Man you really are the black sheep of the family huh? Never mind yes Jacob Black as in your second cousin.”
I looked at her as if she was now the one speaking French. She couldn’t be serious me and Black related? No way how unbelievable was that?
“Are you serious?”
“Yes Jacob’s father is Billy Black and he is first cousin to your mom. Their fathers were brothers and their grandfather was Ephraim Black.”
“I have no idea what the relevance of that is but okay.”
“The relevance of that is that Ephraim was the Alpha until Billy. When Billy was hurt and the gene passed to Jake and then he turned down the the rite of passage so it went to Sam since there was no direct descendant. Hey wait a minute if you are a direct descendant of Ephraim Black that means you could be Alpha.”
I had no idea what that entailed or what the value of that was so I continued to listen.
“Ok so then there’s Quil, Embry, Jared, Paul, Seth and myself.”
I thought I had heard her wrong but when I looked at her she was nodding her head yes, as if she knew my inner most thoughts. I felt a chill run up my spine and I wondered what else was going to happen tonight.
“So Leah lets go inside and see what’s going on with the blood sucker hunt.”
I followed her back inside and wondered if it was me that he had caught the scent of. I began to think about this Alpha business maybe that was the safest course of action for me to stay alive in this strange new world.
I was nervously pacing by the window worrying about Ben. I had prayed to the spirits that Ben would not be a part of this that the fever would pass over him. I knew it had been a futile hope but it was all that I had to hold on to. I was unaware of Lillian as she crossed the room and placed her trembling hand on my back. I stiffened at her touch and then I did the most ridiculous thing, I burst into tears.
“Lilly, come sit with me.”
I swiped at the tears that were falling down my face. I nodded and followed her to the couch. I sat down unsure of what to do next. I wrapped my arms around my stomach and tried to calm my nerves.
“Lilly I am so sorry for everything. I hope you will give me a chance to explain why I did what I did. I know it is too little too late but there is so much more to this story and you need to hear it.”
I raised my downturned eyes and met the sad eyes of my mother. I wondered why it was that we had let so many years and so much hurt tear us apart. I could see her arms open beckoning me to rest. I let all my defenses down and fell into her embrace as the tears poured.
“Lilly I promise that everything will be okay. I know I was so very hard on you and I apologize for that. I thought I was doing right by you and saving you from a life of pain and regret. I was still raw from your father’s death and wasn’t seeing clearly. You needed me and I wasn’t there for you.”
“Mom I was so angry and I had no way of dealing with it so I took it out on you. I thought you were old and set in your ways and that you cared more about silly legends and tribal rituals than you did about me. I was wrong and I am sorry.”
I could feel the tension leaving Lillian’s arms as she relaxed next to me. I sniffled and dried the tears that were glistening on my cheeks. I turned just slightly, enough to see her eyes.
“Lilly I am going to tell you about another legend and I really want you to listen. I have to warn you that I always thought this was a little too crazy and that it would never happen but I think maybe it was set in motion that summer your father died and you ran away.”
I was surprised by her words and I wondered what I possibly had to do with any of it. I waited for her to begin her tale.
“From the beginning our tribe has been small and peaceful. It was only the arrival of the cold ones that brought about our ability to shape shift. You know the stories of that but what you don’t know is the one about when fire and ice meet and become one. It was said that there would be a strong spirit warrior who would meet and fall in love with a gentle and kind cold one and that the two would become one. It was also said that that union would save all man from total destruction. It was always assumed that the spirit warrior was a male but I think maybe that it was you. “
I was so stunned I couldn’t speak. Was she serious I was the Great Spirit warrior that would lead our tribe into a new frontier? I was small and weak how would I ever be a leader?
“Mom I don’t think I am that person.”
Lillian squeezed my hand and nodded toward the door. I could see Ben and Leah coming inside. I felt my breath catch Ben?
“Mom what are you saying?”
“Lillian I think you and Nick were the beginning but the great leader will be Ben. He is half shape shifter and half vampire and he will unite the two.”
I heard a gasp and turned to see Leah’s shocked expression as she looked accusingly at Ben. She pulled her hand away from his. She began to back away as if his very presence was hurting her.
“You’re part vampire? How is that possible and how is it that I couldn’t tell? You’re a bloodsucker?”
I could see the hurt in Ben’s eyes and he tried to reach for her retreating back. I ached for what was happening in front of me but I could do nothing to help.
“Leah, Ben had no idea until today what he was.”
Leah looked questioningly at Lillian and then back at Ben. I could see her gazing longingly at Ben and I knew that even as mad as she was she had no control over what the fates had set in motion. Leah would not be able to turn her back on Ben she was bound to him as he was to her.
“I swear only me, first I get dumped by Sam and now I am bound to a hybrid. With my luck what could possibly happen next?!”
Lillian was chuckling lightly at Leah’s dramatics. She finally walked back to Ben’s side and took his hand. She still looked at him wearily before relaxing.
“Look I may love you but do not try anything funny or I might morph and rip your throat out. I am sure that I would regret it later but who knows.”
Ben laughed at her irritated face and I knew that he had found the missing part of his heart. I could tell that she was going to be a handful but I also knew that Ben could handle it.
“Lilly I have a question for you.”
I was brought out of my thoughts by my mother’s voice. I raised my eyes in her direction and waited for her to continue.
“Lilly do you have any idea whose scent Sam caught?”
I had a very good idea who it was and I hoped he was safe. I looked from Ben and Leah to my mother. I could feel the tension so thick in the air as I nodded my head.
“I know exactly who it was. It was Nick.”
I could see the look of disbelief on Ben’s face and knew he now had more questions. I also knew that he would need to talk to his father for the answers. I prayed that he was safe and not caught in alone in the woods.
“Mom are you seriously saying that my dad is here?”
“Yes Ben. I was on my way here when I lost control of the car and if it hadn’t been for your father I would surely be dead.
Ben rose from the couch and walked to my side. He sat beside me and took my hand
“Mom I am so sorry are you okay?”
“Oh sweet boy I am fine. I just hope that Nick is safe at our house.”
I could hear Leah grumbling from the other side of the room.
“Great we get to save another bloodsucker, just great; things keep getting better and better.”
We all gave her a look that said shut up. She stopped her muttering and joined us at the door. I was a little nervous about what we would find when we got home but we had to find out eventually.
We'll have to see what happens.
I haven't heard from you in forever. I hope you're doing well and thanks so much for reading.
I am so glad you liked it.
I paced the backyard and thought of what I would say to Lilly and how she would respond with me being a vampire and all. I loved her so much but it was literally against our nature to be together, what had I been thinking coming here after all this time? I stopped and leaned against the oak tree and gazed up at the millions of twinkling stars. The cool night air was soothing, peaceful as I wondered how our lives would have turned out if I had never been changed. I shuttered at the faint memory of that dreadful night that changed everything including me forever. If I had never came looking for Lilly way back then maybe I wouldn’t be this horrible blood thirsty creature that I am today and maybe Lilly and I could have had a life together. I suppose the fates and the stars had other plans for us both. I cocked my head and listened to the voices of the night. I had a feeling that I wasn’t alone.
I quickly and quietly climbed the tree and hid unseen in the top. I watched as a young boy entered the yard from the far side nearest the road. I could see that his stature was tall and athletic and his form was defensive, so he was as aware of me as I was of him. I drew in a deep breath and was met with a repulsive odor that caused my nose to wrinkle in distaste. I knew he was a shape shifter and I knew he would soon catch my scent if he hadn’t already. I watched as he passed the gate and walked cautiously around the fence as not to let anything catch him unaware. He survived his surroundings as all good trackers should. He seemed alert and bright so what was he waiting for? He knew I was here but he seemed to be waiting for someone or something, but what? I remained in my hiding spot and waited to see what was coming for me.
I could hear the new arrivals long before they made their presence known. I used my super hearing to its limit and caught the conversation that was playing out a few blocks over.
‘Edward this is ridiculous. I mean come on what is the worst thing that could happen to me if I am with you?’
‘No Bella you will wait with Angela in the car at the first sign of trouble you leave, got it?’
‘No, I don’t get it that’s the point. I could help you; remember I am the girl who held off the Volturi with her mind.’
‘I know that but we have no idea who or what we are dealing with. Jacob just said that he smelled a vampire, but we have no idea who it is or what has brought them here.’
‘Fine I’ll give you five minutes but that’s it, if you’re not back I will use my shield and Ang and I are coming in, got it.’
I wondered who these people were and how they knew so much about vampires and all this unreal supernatural stuff. I watched as I heard another commotion coming from the front.
“Alice I think you should wait for Edward and Bella before you go charging in like gangbusters?”
“Oh come on Jazz it’s going to be fine trust me.”
“Oh I trust you Alice I just think we need to wait for everyone else to get here. “
“Fine here they are now.”
I could hear several feet pounding on the sidewalk as well as a car screeching to a halt in the front drive. I waited sure that my immediate demise was coming soon. I hoped this odd clan wasn’t here to harm Lilly because of me. I wondered who and what these strange visitors were. I watched as the guy by the fence crossed his arms in a defensive manner and walked to the gate. I was shocked to see several people, well not people really, vampires proceed through the gate. The first was a tall bulky guy with short, curly dark hair he was very muscular, then a tall willowy blonde who seemed rather put out by the whole thing, next came a short bouncy pixie that looked as if she should have been a fairy instead of a vampire, she was followed by a honey blonde guy who seemed very uncomfortable with the situation at hand. I laughed at that I was right there with him on that, I was rather uncomfortable myself right now. Finally a tall guy with bronze hair and a understanding demeanor walked inside the gate. He looked at the young guy who had arrived first and nodded his head.
“Jacob what do you think?”
“I’m not sure who it is or where but I can smell it. I waited for you guys to get here before looking any further.”
I watched as the group stopped talking and looked expectantly at the gate. I wondered who was coming now. I saw a tall vampire with blonde hair and a fatherly face. He seemed to be the leader of this coven. I saw a lovely lady at his side with compassionate eyes full of love for her family. I knew that these vampires were different unlike any other coven I had ever encountered. I thought that this must be all of them but then I saw a lady with a small frame and medium height join the group. I felt my breath catch as I realized who she was. She had reddish brown hair and the same pale complexion that gave away her true nature she was a vampire. I couldn’t believe my eyes I had been sure that she was dead and that I would never see her again. I wondered how it was possible that she had befallen my same fate and had lived all these years without me knowing she was like me.
I listened as she joined the group. I knew she could sense me somehow and that she was unaware of exactly what was happening. I wondered if she still had the connection that we had once shared. I closed my eyes and focused all my energy on her and her alone. I could feel the current of energy flowing freely through my body and going out as I projected the flow toward her. She stiffened and then she too closed her eyes and I heard her voice in my head, ‘is that you Nick? I am here.’
I could feel my lips curving into a smile. I remember how I had hated hearing her nagging voice in my head as a kid. I now knew that I had missed that more than I had realized. ‘It is I how are you?’
‘I am good actually but where are you and how did you find me?’
‘I’m here in the tree, don’t look. Is it safe for me to come down or will they kill me?’
I could hear a soft chuckle coming from her pale lips. I looked in her direction and saw her nodding her head before I heard her, ‘This is my family they will not hurt you.’
I knew that I had no escape so I decided to take a chance and see what happened next. I quickly and quietly scaled the tree and landed softly on my feet below. I could see every head snap in my direction. I felt like a sitting duck but I managed to make my way quickly across the space that separated us. I raised my eyes and saw so much wonder, hate, curiosity and finally as my eyes landed on Renee I saw unrequited love.
“Everybody calm down and do not move, I will be right back.”
“Renee what a minute where are you going and who is this?”
“Oh I have to get Charlie and the girls from the car.”
I was now alone surrounded by questioning eyes. I tried to stay calm and wait for Renee to return to the circle that had formed around me. I suppose they thought I was a threat of some kind or that I might try to leave but I had nowhere to be so I waited. I saw Renee returning with two young ladies and an older man, who I knew was Charlie. I was surprised at how old he seemed but he had aged over the years unlike the rest of us.
“Ok so I know you are all up in arms here about this nomad vampire but trust me he isn’t here to hurt anyone are you Nick?”
Everyone turned to look at me and then back at Renee as she said my name. The only person who showed any sign of recognition was Charlie and he stared at me with wide eyed amazement. I raised a hand and waved in his direction. Then my eyes landed on the girl standing between Charlie and Renee she was about sixteen or seventeen and about the prettiest thing I had seen since Lilly. I began to walk toward her as everyone crouched around her as if to protect her from me. I stopped and raised my hands as if in surrender. Renee rushed to my side.
“Stop its ok. This is Nicolas my brother.”
Everyone froze and looked at us, first at Renee then at me. I knew they were puzzled by this and that other than Charlie no one knew of my existence. I could feel Renee take my hand and lead me to where Charlie was standing.
“Nick this is your niece Isabella Marie Swan.”
I was enchanted by her sweet face and rosy cheeks. She smiled back at me and offered her hand. I grasped it firmly in mine. I was totally in love with my sweet niece who I had no idea had survived all those years ago.
“Isabella, you named her after mom.”
“Yes it seemed right.”
I looked at her big brown eyes and knew that I had found my home.
“Hi Isabella I am your uncle Nick. I have waited a very long time to meet you.”
“Hi it’s nice to meet you Uncle Nick but you can just call me Bella.”
I pulled her close into a hug but I immediately heard a growl coming from over my left shoulder. I released her to the arms of the tall bronze haired vampire. He protectively put his arm around her and led her back to the circle. I wondered what the connection between them was.
“Sorry Nick you’ll have to excuse Edward he is a bit overprotective when Bella’s safety is concerned. He loves her so I am sure you understand.”
I nodded my head and opened my mouth to speak but was interrupted by another gasp coming from behind. I turned to see Lilly along with several others. My world tilted and my silent heart wanted to sing. She was standing in the moonlight and she looked so sad and vulnerable. I longed to reach out to her and to take all her troubles and pain away but my legs felt like lead and I couldn’t move. I sank to my knees and buried my face in my hands. I did not deserve to be here or to harbor such feelings for such a pure and lovely woman as Lilly. I knew she deserved far better than me but she also deserved an explanation. I was overcome with grief for what I had unknowingly done to my love and for what would never be. I felt a tender hand on my shoulder and a warm embrace. I just sat there in her arms and listened as she told me everything was going to be okay. I knew it wasn’t true but the sweet words falling from her lips gave me hope that maybe it was.
“Nick please look at me. I know I owe you the truth and I am sorry for leaving you the way I did.”
I raised my head to see her eyes swimming with unshed tears. I was stunned that she was apologizing to me for leaving, what choice had I given her? I had lied to her by not telling her who and what I was. I had been selfish and stupid; it was I who owed her an explanation.
“Lilly honey please stop,” I raised my hand to her lips to stop her from saying any more. “It is me that owes you the truth about everything. I should have told you what happened before I barged back into your life.”
She looked at me as a single tear escaped and trailed down her cheek. I raised a finger to catch it and wipe it away. She smiled at me that smile that made my senses go crazy out of control.
I looked around to see that we were now alone and I dared to hug her close to my chest and wonder what she was thinking. I eased her back and searched her eyes for some sign of hate or regret but all I saw was love shining back in her black eyes.
“Lilly I find myself at a loss for words to tell you how much you mean to me and how sorry I am for what happened all those years ago. I came here hoping to see that you had moved on and that you were happy. I never planned on seeing or speaking to you but when I saw how upset you were I followed you. I know I don’t deserve anything but your hate and contempt but when I look at you all I see is love.”
I could feel Lilly pulling me to my feet. I stood in front of her and watched for some sign of disgust but it never came. She looked at me as if I alone was the only reason she had for smiling
“Nick I have always loved you and I am so sorry for running away like I did. I was scared and I didn’t know what to do. I found a place to call my own and I have made a life for myself here. “
“But Lilly you deserve someone who can love you in ways that I can’t and to be with you forever to take care of you. I hate that you have been all alone.”
I could feel a change in the air around us and I knew that Lilly was tensing up for some reason. I looked at her now troubled eyes as she looked from me to the house. I wondered what it was that she wasn’t telling me.
“Lilly what is it?”
“Nick I have to tell you something and please try to understand that I never wanted to hurt you. I fear that when you know why I left you will hate me forever.”
I drew her close and listened to the frantic beating of her heart. She was going to have a heart attack if she didn’t calm down. I ran my hand up and down her back trying to sooth her runaway emotions.
“Lil, you can tell me whatever it is we’ll get through it together.”
She pushed away from me and began to pace the yard. I followed close behind her until she stopped by the tree and leaned against it with her hands on her knees. I waited as she collected herself. Finally she pushed herself away from the tree trunk and walked back to me. I offered her my hand and she took it in hers.
“Nick I have not been alone.”
I was suddenly sure she was going to finish breaking my heart by telling me that there was someone else. I looked at her and tried to keep my emotions at bay, “Well that’s good you had no reason to wait for me. You had every right to find someone else.”
She raised hand and cut me off. I stopped rambling and waited for her to continue.
“Nick I have a son, his name is Nicolas Benjamin, he has your eyes, your smile, your laugh and your kindness.”
I was so stunned at her admission that I couldn’t think or react for an immeasurable time. Was she trying to tell me that I had a son, that we had a son?
“Lilly, I, we have a son?”
“Yes would you like to meet him?”
I nodded my head unable to speak. I found it impossible to believe that I had a son, me a vampire had a son. I forced my feet to move and follow Lilly into the house. I could hear soft murmurs coming from the front room. We walked in and everyone grew quiet and still. I was met at the door by Renee she took my arm and pulled me into the room. She was leading me to a seat by the window. I looked behind to see Lilly following close behind. I sat down and made room for Lilly beside me.
As my eyes followed Lilly’s every move I hadn’t noticed the new faces in the room. I heard a throat clear and saw the man who was the leader of this group.
“Hello Nicolas isn’t it?”
“Um yeah, but everyone calls me Nick.”
“Well hello Nick it’s nice to meet you. I was hoping you would tell us what brought you here and how you came to be like us.”
I nodded as I tried to make sense of my life and form coherent sentences. I hated speaking in public and this was a very large group now and all eyes were on me.
“Of course, what would you like to know first?”
“Well how about starting from the beginning, how did you come to know Lilly.”
“Well I had come home to visit Renee. I had moved to California to go to college and I decided to spend the summer here after finishing my first year. I remember going with her to La Push to visit Sarah and that was when I saw Lilly. I can’t really explain it but something was pulling me to her. I had been playing Frisbee with a bunch of friends when she came storming onto the beach like she was mad at the world and I lost all concentration. I finally just walked over and sat down beside her. We spend all summer together and then I had to leave for school. I hated leaving her and I promised to come back when she finished school and when her mother didn’t hate me so much.”
“Okay so you came back to find Lilly before you were changed?”
I found myself lost in my past as I nodded my head and continued my story.
“I went back to school and wrote to Lilly every day for the first few months but I never got any reply. After a while I stopped writing and I concentrated on school. I tried to forget her but she was always there in my mind. I finally got a letter from Renee over a year later and she was getting married. I came back for the wedding and I hoped to see Lilly but there was no sign of her. I went home broken and sure that she had moved on. I spend that summer backpacking through Europe and trying to forget Lilly all together. I had no intention of coming back to Forks until Renee sent me another letter that she was expecting and that I was going to be an Uncle. I was so happy for her and Charlie and I wanted to be here for the arrival of the new edition.”
I looked at the faces that were staring at me in rapt attention and I focused on Lilly as I started again, “I came home a week before the due date and I had hoped to see you but I learned that you had left Forks for parts unknown. I was devastated once again.”
I could feel Lilly tense beside me and I looked at her troubled eyes. She was close to tears once again. I took her hand and held it tight.
“Oh my I left to go find you and you were here all along.”
“So it seems.”
Renee was looking at me questioningly, “Nick you never came to see us, so what happened?”
I looked at the confused faces and told them what had happened next, “To be honest I am not totally clear on that but I was on my way to Charlie and Renee’s house. I remember feeling chills run up and down my spine and then I was running in fear that someone or something was following me. I ran to the forest to hide but whom or what it was found me. I heard menacing voices talking about how I wasn’t the one they had been sent for but maybe I would do. The next thing I knew I was bitten on my arm and there was a burning running through my body. I had never hurt so badly in my life and I thought I was dead. I awoke sometime later to find that I was still alive so to speak but I wished I was dead. I could hear the voices they were debating what to do with me. It seems they had been looking for someone else.”
I heard Renee gasp in surprise, “The Volturi had sent someone to find me. They had wanted me and Bella. I am so sorry Nick that this happened to you too.”
“It’s not your fault sis.”
“I feel responsible for all of this mess.”
I turned my head as the kind vampire began to speak, “Renee you of all people know how the Volturi guard is and what happened is in no way your fault.” He then turned his warm eyes on me, “Nick how did you get away from them?”
I shrugged my shoulders, “I heard them plotting to consult with Aro, whoever that is, and then debating to kill me instead of admit to their mistake. I heard them enter my room and I never let on that I had awakened. Once they left I waited five minutes and climbed out of the window and took off running. I had no idea where I was going but I knew I had to get out of Forks and that I needed Lilly.”
“So that’s when you found me.”
I nodded my head and squeezed her hand.
“I suppose now it is my turn to finish this story. Nick found me and stayed with me for a while. I had no idea that I had the gene for shape shifting; to my knowledge no female had ever had it. I suppose I was the first because I was an only child. I was already pregnant with Ben when the pieces started falling into place and I figured out what was going on. I left in the middle of the night and took several weeks to get to Forks. It seems that a hybrid pregnancy between a vampire and a shape shifter is much more advanced so by the time I arrived home I was in labor. It was lucky for me that Carlisle found me and helped me.”
Every eye in the room was now on Lilly, Ben and me. I found myself staring at the young man seated across from me staring at me as if he were looking in a mirror. I was stunned to see a reflection of my smile smiling back at me. Ben was indeed a lot like his father. I stood pulling Lilly with me and crossed the room.
“Ben sweetheart I would like you to meet your dad.”
Ben looked at me in shocked amazement. He finally got to his feet and offered me his hand. I took it and pulled him into my arms. I breathed in the smell of him and marveled at the feel of his strong arms around my waist. I had missed out on so much but I was here now and I knew this was where I belonged.
“So you’re my dad?”
“So it seems son.”
I was so overwhelmed with so many emotions that I didn’t know what to do or say next. I heard voices behind me. I saw Bella crossing the room to stand by Ben.
“Hey so I guess all these crazy feelings I was having about you are ok. I suppose since we are cousins we have some sort of connection.”
Ben looked at Bella and I wondered if they shared the same telepathy that Renee and I had. I thought it was nice that Ben had family and friends now. I could see the young Quileute boy looking at us as if he had something to say. Lilly crossed the room and stood in front of him and a dark haired girl.
“Hi Jacob I am Lilly Black your dad is my cousin which makes you and I second cousins. I suppose that means you are related to Ben third cousins I guess.”
I could see Jacob looking at Ben thoughtfully and then he looked at the girl who was now standing with him. She shared the Quileute traits.
“Hey Leah what brings you here?”
She snorted and rolled her eyes, “Hey Black I am here with Ben, it seems you’re not the only one who runs with vampires these days.”
I could hear laughter filling the room and everyone breaking up into smaller groups to converse and figure out what to do from here. I was filled with such happiness and joy that I felt as if I could burst. I had finally found the place I fit in and it felt so right.