Eclipse written from Jacob's pov. Obviously this is the sequel to Jacob's NM. This will be Eclipse as SM wrote it, I will not be changing the ending. For an alternate ending to Eclipse, check out my story Bella's Sun. - http://thetwilightsaga.com/group/officialteamjacob/forum/topics/bel...
(This story starts off the same as Bella's Sun, that story will detour in chapter 3)
Chapter 1 - WAR
Again! Sam yelled, as I picked myself up from the ground shaking dirt and gravel from my fur. Paul crouched down and we circled and evaded one another, each of us reading the mind of the other. Our pack mates watched closely and their own thoughts mixed in as well intensifying the challenge. We all have been practicing for days trying to sharpen our reflexes, and allowing our wolf to react rather than think and decide. When successful our wolf would move almost completely without thought and catch the other one by surprise, it was fantastic. Sam was careful not to let any of us get too seriously injured, but lets just say it is a good thing we heal fast.
When I returned from Bella's with the knowledge that she wanted the Cullens to make her one of them it became clear that the treaty was going to be broken. We had no idea how much time we would have, but we wanted to be ready.
Our greatest obstacles were Edward's ability to read our minds and Alice's ability to know the future. Her knowing what we were going to do the moment we decided was scary and our only option was to be faster than ever before. There would be no time to hesitate or second guess, no time to think. Jasper's ability to control our emotions was equally scary, and I sure hoped that Sam had some idea of how to counteract that because I could think of nothing. We knew that the Cullen coven would be a united front and we would have to be ready.
Fight training turned out to be a perfect way to vent our pent up anxiety and frustration. None of us took the treaty being broken lightly, and would not hesitate to declare war. However for me it was so much more than a treaty that was being violated, it was Bella who was putting herself on the alter as a human sacrifice. How could she not value her life more than that? Does she not see how important she is?
Suddenly I felt Paul's hard head directly into to my chest and I was on my back and his teeth instantly went around my throat making it where I couldn't breathe. Paul stand down. Sam ordered, and Paul's hold immediately released and oxygen refilled my lungs. Great job Paul,Sam acknowledged. Jacob distractions like that are going to get you killed.
Once again I picked myself off the ground and was angry and embarrassed. I hated that Bella still had that affect on me. I couldn't help but think about her, she called all the time and just wouldn't take the hint that we were over. There was never a we to begin without, outside of being her “best friend” and I knew that the love I had for her could not be stuffed back inside the ''friendship box”, we had gotten too close for that. That ship had sailed, and along with it my hopes and dreams of a life with Bella.
Pulling myself together I sat to the side and watched the next set sparring with one another, sometimes it was one on one and other times we had two on one. Some days were spent more on the mental training of combat and others were more physical endurance. Fighting against a large coven was mostly likely not going to be over very quickly and we so we ran for hours and hours. Most of the time we could make a game similar to tag, where one or two wolves would be “it” and would try and hit the others to work on dodging and running. After a couple more hours Sam declared training over and we all went home hungry and tired.
Quil had joined the pack about one week after the Cullens returned. He was so freaking excited to be in on the secret, and have his friends back, he didn't care about anything else. He stayed a wolf for just over a week, not in any hurry to get back to his human life and his girlfriend got frustrated not knowing where he was and broke up with him. They had only been dating about a month, so Quil took the break up well and really so did she. I must admit it is fantastic to have Quil with us and to not have to keep it from him anymore.
The pack feels complete and there is a sense of unity among us all, a brotherhood. Well maybe not all, Leah is still as difficult as ever and never fails to remind us of how she feels like an 'outsider' among 'outsiders'. We have all learned to pretty much take her moaning and complaining as just part of her charming personality.
In no time I made it home, landing on two feet, slipped on my shorts and walked inside. It was dark inside with only a handwritten note indicating that dad had gone fishing with Charlie. I cringed at the idea of what those two gossips would plan and scheme while having the whole day together. As much as I loved my dad, he really needed to get a life so he could stay out of mine. I suppose I could try and just pretend like I wasn't dying a little more each day that I ignored Bella, and then he wouldn't worry so much, but I wasn't really good about hiding my feelings. I always seemed to lay things out straight, just how it was. You couldn't sugar coat crap, and that is just how things are right now.
I walked over to the freezer and smiled when I saw three boxes of pizza staring back at me. I got them all out and turned on the oven while I sat them on the counter. I opened one box took the plastic wrap and cardboard off and placed it in the oven. It would need to cook for 20 minutes so I decided to jump in the shower and get cleaned up. The water felt great relaxing my tired muscles and I washed my hair and realized I would need to cut it again soon. I probably should have weeks ago, but I just didn't have the energy to care.
I got out of the shower, dried myself off, and walked to my room for some sweat pants. As I entered the kitchen I could smell the pizza and my mouth began to water. I removed the hot pizza from the oven and got the second pizza out of the box placing it in the oven to cook. I ate the first pizza while the 2nd cooked, and when it was ready did the same with the third. Once I was finished eating I sat down in front of the TV for some mindless relaxation.
It didn't take long before I heard my dad rolling in the front door.
“Hey Dad, there is some pizza on the counter if you are hungry.” I said from the couch.
“Okay, thanks.” Billy replied as he rolled over to me and dropped a folded square piece of paper that said 'Jacob' across the front into my lap.
“What is this?” I asked picking it up. He completely ignored me as he rolled back into the kitchen, I assumed for pizza. I opened the paper and my eyes about jumped out of their sockets as I read.
Please Jacob, talk to me!! I didn't read any further as the paper dropped from my hands and floated like a feather to the floor, as I bolted from the couch and stormed into the kitchen.
“What the hell was that!?!” I yelled.
“Jacob she's trying. Give her a chance to fix things.” Billy took two slices of pizza and set them on his plate and rolled in front of the kitchen table.
“What on earth for? Do you want me to just pretend that she isn't suicidal? Or has she given Edward up?” I asked sarcastically while pacing back and forth in our small kitchen.
“No. She hasn't. But she cares about you, maybe you could get her to change her mind.”
“Like that'll ever happen.”
“Well maybe it would if you would stop sulking, put on your big boy pants and read that damn note. You might just learn something.”
I stopped dead in my tracks in the middle of the kitchen, “Did you read it?” I was so shocked I didn't know what more to say.
“No, good grief Jacob. Neither Charlie nor I have read it. But the fact that she sent it in the first place is all I needed to know.”
I pulled my chair out and slumped into it, “I can't believe this.” I said shaking my head.
“Come on Jacob, she needs you and I know you need her too.”
“But that's the problem Dad, I need her far more than she needs me. I can't go back to being the friend she wants me to be, too much has happened.”
“Wouldn't her friendship be better than nothing at all?”
“I don't know. What would be the point?”
“And I think she needs you even more than you need her, she just doesn't realize it.”
“I know.” I looked up and I could see the note shouting at me from the living room floor. “I can't deal with this right now, I'm going for a walk.” I said as I stood from the table.
“Okay. Hey there is a bucket of fish outside, would you mind bringing them in.”
“Sure, sure.” I said as I got up and walked outside grabbed the bucket and brought inside next to the kitchen sink. “I'll be back before too late.”
As I stepped outside I could see the sun start to descend and I knew it would be slipping away into darkness soon. I walked over to the beach and listened to the waves come and lick my feet before receding back into the ocean. My mind was a mess, I didn't know what to do about Bella. Why was a friendship with me so important to her if she wasn't planning on giving up Edward and her desire to be one of them? I did the best I could to avoid thinking about that last part, how her skin would ice over, her beautiful heart would no longer beat, and her chocolate brown eyes would be lost forever.
A silent tear slipped out of the corner of my eye and my heart ached at the possibility of Bella being my enemy. The instinct to attack and kill would spread through my body regardless of the face that stood before me. I felt helpless as I sat down in the rough sand, laying flat on my back as I watched the sun continue to slip away. I felt someone come and sit beside me, but I didn't bother to turn my head to see who it was, instead I just watched as the sky filled with blazing oranges and pinks until slowly the colors slipped away into black.
I felt a hand, small and cold, settle itself into my own. For a second I didn't move, had Bella driven out here? I had never known Bella to be this silent, and I'm sure she would have had plenty to say if she were here. Also I knew Bella's scent by heart and this was very different. I could smell sweat mixed with a sweet apple smell, like a lotion or perfume. I lightly moved my hand and could feel the delicate fingers and my thumb rubbed the soft skin at the wrist, it felt so different that I had no idea who's hand it could be. Slowly out of curiosity I turned my head and saw the dark russet skin and hazel eyes that I knew to belong to Jackie.
I laid my head back down and relaxed my hand, which she didn't let go of, and looked out across the night sky. “What are you doing?” I asked.
“You just looked so lonely.”
“Did it ever occur to you that I wanted to be alone?”
“Yes.” She took a deep breathe. “Something has happened to you Jake, and it scares me sometimes.” Her voice trembled some and I looked at her arms covered in goosebumps. She had a tight sleeveless shirt, matching pink and brown pants, and running shoes, I guess she had been running along the beach when she found me.
I brought my hands to my side, making her drop mine, and pushed myself to a sitting position brought her to my side. “Where's your jacket?” I could feel her cold arm against my hot skin and brought my hand around to her other arm.
“In my car, I get really hot when I run so I don't usually need it. I didn't exactly plan on being out so late.”
“Oh.” It was painfully obvious that I was the reason that she was still here and I didn't really know what I thought of that. Jackie was a nice girl when she wasn't spreading rumors about our romance, a romance that was about as real as the Easter Bunny. She had kissed me once in the school parking lot, I didn't kiss her back so it didn't really count as a real kiss, however no matter what I said no one believed me that nothing was going on. I knew it was bad when even Quil and Embry thought I was holding out on them and keeping it a secret from them. Truth be told there was nothing to tell, other than today the only times I saw Jackie was at school and these days the pack pretty much stayed to ourselves.
I heard Jackie take a deep sigh and felt her body relax so that her head rested on my chest. “You're really hot Jake.”
I couldn't help but chuckle. “Thanks.”
She lifted her head and smacked me in the chest with her hand. “Not like that, you dork. Well maybe that is true too.” She ducked her head embarrassed. “But that wasn't what I meant.”
“Sure, sure. It's no big deal.”
“Why are you so hot? You're not sick are you?” She asked as she reached her hand out to probably touch my forehead.
I leaned out of the way. “No I'm not sick. The heat is just genetic, just part of who I am.”
“Your dad's not this hot.”
“Glad you think so.”
She just rolled her eyes. “Ha, ha. Okay, I admit I walked right into that one.”
“The heat skipped his generation, and my mom's family had this issue as well.” We were both silent for a moment, and I hoped that explanation was good enough. “And speaking of my dad, I need to be heading home.”
We each got up and brushed the sand from our legs and back side. “Do you need me to walk with you to your car?” La Push was a pretty safe area, but I thought it would be rude to just leave her there.
“Sure, thanks.” She said with a smile.
Her car wasn't far and we walked in silence. I watched as she unlocked her door and I waved 'goodbye' as she climbed in.
What an unexpected evening this has turned out to be. When I got home I helped dad get to bed, neither of us speaking and I crawled into bed shortly after. The note was still on the living room floor exactly where it had landed and stayed there for two days, neither of us wanted to touch it. However the longer it stayed there the bigger it seemed to grow, soon it would fill up the whole living room.
Finally as I was eating breakfast before school, dad wheeled himself in to watch some TV as he straddled his chair over the note he had had enough. “Jacob pick up that note or I will. And if it is still there I'm reading it this time.”
I glared at him as I finished my last bite of cereal and placed the bowl in the sink. I went to the bathroom, brushed my teeth, and then gathered my books placing them in my backpack for school. As I walked back in, I planned to simply walk right out the door until I saw my dad with the note open on his lap. “What the crap Dad?”
“Hey, I warned you fair and square. If you didn't want to know what she had to say, that is your problem, but I sure as hell did.”
“I can't believe you.” I walked over and yanked it from his lap and shoved it in my backpack and walked out the door making sure that it slammed loudly behind me. I knew he hated it when I slammed the door and I could hear him grumbling inside.
He totally deserved it noisy old man. I never dreamed he was serious with his threat, but I knew I should have. He never has handled secrets very well. I approached Quil and Embry who were both waiting for me at Embry's house, I hoped that they would be able to see my irritation and just let it go, but I guess nothing was going my way today.
“Hey Jake!” Embry called.
“Hey.” I answered sourly.
“Dude Jacob, what crawled inside your pants and died?” Quil snickered.
“Ohhhh.” They both said together.
“Are you still ignoring her calls?” Quil asked.
“What did she do this time?” Embry asked.
“She sent a freaking note from her dad, to mine, to me!”
Quil clutched his stomach and started laughing so hard he almost tripped. “Man, that is awesome.” Quil stammered once he could breathe again.
“You are seriously messed up.” I said shaking my head.
“So what did the note say?” Embry asked.
“You'll have to ask my dad, he's the one who read it.” This time is was Embry's turn to almost fall over laughing.
“Why haven't you read it?” Quil asked.
“If I wanted to know what she had to say I would answer the damn phone, not pretend I was in 2nd grade.” I gave a frustrated sigh.
These guys knew my frustration with Bella more than anyone. Despite my best intention I couldn't help but have her on my mind each and every time we patrolled and they probably wanted me to move on. Or at least settle things so that I could pretend to move on, having Bella tangling in the air wasn't good on anyone. However, I couldn't think of anything that she could possibly have to say to me.
We made it to class and as I pulled out my stuff from my backpack I saw the crumbled note buried deep inside, calling to me, begging to be heard. I know I was being stubborn and stupid, but I couldn't handle feeling the hope that she still cared about me or the pain of knowing it was really over. Finally by 3rd period I had had enough and I couldn't take it any longer, so when I pulled out my books and notepad I reluctantly pulled out Bella's note. I smoothed out the ruffled edges.
Please, Jacob talk to me! There has got to be something that I can do. I'm sorry, I know that it hurts you that I am friends with the Cullens, but they are part of my life too. You are my very best friend and I know that we can make this work. I miss you and I need to figure out a way to be your friend as well, if you would only just talk to me, please Jake, please.
After reading the note, I knew I should respond. There is just something so personal about hand written words that is so much harder to ignore. Maybe it was because it was such a physical reminder, as soon as the phone stops ringing than your window of conversation is over, but with a note that window never closes. I flipped to the next page of my notebook and started to write.
What were you thinking! I do not want to talk to you.
No that wasn't really what I wanted to say and I ripped the page from my notebook and it made a loud tearing sound and everyone stared at me, including my teacher who stopped and looked confused.
“I'm sorry. I won't do that again.” I stammered.
I don't know why you're making Charlie carry notes to Billy like we're in second grade – if I wanted to talk to you I would answer the . . . Well that wasn't really what I wanted to say either, but instead of ripping the page out, I just crossed it out, and tried again.
You made the choice here, okay? You can't have it both ways when . . . It is not like she could have us both she needed to understand that.
What part of 'mortal enemies' is too complicated for you to . . . I had been writing so hard that I broke the tip of my pen and ink leaked over the page.
Look, I know I'm being a jerk, but there's just no way around . . . Dammit it was no longer just the tip that broke as the pen shattered between my fingers. I grumbled to myself as I reached inside my backpack for another pen, making sure that I didn't hold it quite so tightly.
We can't be friends when you're spending all your time with a bunch of . . . Oops should probably stop there, she hates when I use the terms 'bloodsuckers' or 'leeches' to describe her 'friends'.
It just makes it worse when I think about you too much, so don't write anymore . . . Nothing I could think of was coming out the way I wanted it to.
Yeah, I miss you, too. A lot. Doesn't change anything. Sorry.
Angrily I put a dark black line through every word I had written, I was afraid that my arm would start shaking and give away the pain and anger that I felt. I got to the last line and I just couldn't mark it out, the truth of the words sprung from the page. So I simply added my name to the bottom and folded it. I was about to put both notes back in my backpack when the bell rang and Quil leaped from his desk grabbed Bella's note and sprinted out the door.
Quil was going to be one dead dog by the time I got to him as I sprung from my desk to follow him down the hall.
“Oh come on Jake, you know we all were going to know what it says anyways.” Embry tried to reason with. “This will just save you from having to think of it later.”
“That is so not the point Em.”
Embry and I caught up with Quil in the cafeteria with a huge tray of food looking completely innocent, like there was no reason for me to punch him in the nose. He was very wise to remain in a public place otherwise I certainly would have. The rest of the day was uneventful, Quil grew a conscious (black and blue in color) and gave me the note back before walking to my house.
We had an afternoon snack, that would probably be two full meals for a normal person, and then hung out in the garage. I was still in a pretty sour mood, but thankfully they chose to ignore me and just let me sulk. The best of friends knew when to push you on an issue and when to let it go, and these guys were the best.
At dinner Dad apologized for invading my privacy with the note and I easily accepted, but I could still feel the tension between us. Bella had become a thick cloud hanging over both our heads and I knew it would burst at any moment, I just wasn't sure what the damage would be once it started. As I got Dad ready for bed I placed my note back to Bella on his dresser.
“This is my response to Bella, you can read it if you want to, I don't care. I won't reply to another one so if another comes, read it, burn it, whatever, but don't give it to me. I'm done.”
I saw the sadness mixed with understanding in his eyes as I walked out the door. I just wish that my heart would be as “done” as my brain was. I hated the powerful affect that she still had over me, but I was going to simply take one day at a time and keep putting one foot in front of the other. I would make my dad proud and continue to serve the pack to the best of my ability.
- For starters there will not be near as many 'facts' for Eclipse because truthfully there aren't as many. SM has never written a summary for Eclipse, so this will be largely my interpretation. However I really liked having a place to explain where I got my ideas, and I do feel that my interpretation is surrounded by facts.
- The last comment that SM made in her summary of NM was that Jacob left to inform his brothers so that they could prepare for war with the Cullens.
- Jacob's concern about Alice seeing them make decisions, at this point they do not know that she cannot see the wolves. Jacob learns that later in Eclipse.
- Jackie's character is completely fictional. I really like the idea of Jacob having someone to talk to who doesn't know anything and can't be inside his head, so she will pop up from time to time. If Jacob has enough self control to be friends with Bella than he also has enough self control to be friends with someone who is not in the pack.
- Jacob's sense of humor with Jackie is based on BD, if Jacob was still able to be funny while Bella was dying (blond jokes with Rosalie, some banter with Leah) than I think he would have been able to be funny here as well.
- Also my chapter titles may not be the same as Eclipse titles, unless I feel that it lines up well for that particular chapter.
That is awesome that you were going to try and look it up, I would imagine that would have been really hard to do. I was glad to give you the meaning.
Glad you loved the chapter!!
Chapter 16 – FIRE AND ICE
It was only a few more minutes of running with Bella tucked tightly to my chest as the snow began to fall all around us, before I saw the tent just ahead on the side of the mountain. The wind shook hard not allowing the snow to settle in any particular place.
“Bella!” Edward called, he had been pacing back and forth and ran to our side. I hated being so close to him and set Bella down on her own feet. He quickly wrapped his arms around her in a tight hug. “Thank you,” Edward looked over her head at me. “That was quicker than I expected, and I truly appreciate it.”
I just shrugged. This guy is so annoying, thanking me all the time, but I knew that it was important to remain peaceful, but there was no way I was going to be that friendly. “Get her inside. This is going to be bad – my hair's standing on my scalp. Is that tent secure?” It was a creepy feeling, I have felt the change in weather before, but never to this extent.
“I all but welded it to the rock.”
“Good.” I looked up at the black sky and the swirling snow. “I'm going to change,” I said. “I want to know what's going on back home.” I took the jacket off and hung it on a branch and then went into the trees to finish undressing. All was well at home, Sam was the only one phased he was too edgy to try and stay human. This was the first real battle that we have ever faced and he was under a lot of pressure to keep everyone safe.
The storm was worse than I have ever seen and the tent rocked violently and I wasn't able to sleep at all. It didn't help that I could hear Bella's teeth rattling inside and I could tell that she must be freezing. I didn't know what he had inside that tent, but it was irritating that they weren't more prepared. He tried to get her leave and for him to try and move the tent further down the mountain.
You should have thought of that before you set it up at the top of the freaking mountain.
Edward growled so low there was no way Bella could hear. “What can I do?” Edward asked, I wasn't sure if he was talking to Bella or my constant complaints out here.
I whined, wishing that there was something I could do.
“G-g-g-get out of h-h-h-here,” Bella ordered again.
I rolled my eyes, I wasn't whining for me, I wasn't cold, she was the one suffering.
“He's just worried about you,” Edward translated, granted an edited version of what I said, but I let it slide this time. “He's fine. His body is equipped to deal with this.”
There has to be something you can do? I complained.
“What do you want me to do?” Edward growled, clearly done being polite. “Carry her through that? I don't see you making yourself useful. Why don't you go fetch a space heater or something?”
Make myself useful, that I could do.
Sam, I'm going in, send Seth to cover for me if you want someone out here.
You're crazy, you know that right?
Alright. Sam answered
I howled in delight as I shifted back into my human form.
“That was hardly necessary,” Edward muttered. “And that's the worst idea I've ever heard.”
“Better than anything you've come up with. Go fetch a space heater,” I grumbled. “I'm not a St. Bernard.”
I took the frozen jacket off the branch and grabbed the zipper of the tent and tried to fit my body through the smallest opening that I could. Edward not far from me and Bella was completely on the other side of the tent her body convulsing with shivering.
“I don't like this,” Edward hissed as I closed the tent opening behind myself. “Just give her the coat and get out.”
I saw Bella looking around at us and her lips moved, I wasn't sure if she was trying to talk or they were just chattering that badly. “The parka is for tomorrow – she's too cold to warm it up by herself. It's frozen.” I dropped it by the door. “You said she needed a space heater, and here I am.” I stretched my arms wide, touching both sides of the small tent.
“J-J-J-Jake, you'll f-f-f-freez-z-z-e,” Bella complained pathetically.
“Not me,” I said cheerfully. “I run at a toasty one-oh-eight point nine these days. I'll have you sweating in no time.”
Edward snarled, but I ignored him and crouched down next to Bella and began to unzip her sleeping bag. Suddenly he grasped on to my shoulder, his ice cold skin burned my flesh and the instinct to attack was immediate and I tensed myself to control myself.
“Get your hand off me,” I growled, keeping my teeth clinched together.
“Keep your hands off of her,” Edward answered blackly.
“D-d-d-don't f-f-f-fight,” Bella pleaded and her body continued to shake violently.
“I'm sure she'll thank you for this when her toes turn black and drop off,” I snapped.
Edward thought about it for a moment and then dropped his hand from my shoulder and moved back to the other side of the tent. “Watch yourself.”
I chuckled. “Scoot over, Bella,” I said, zipping the sleeping bag open farther. She stared at me in shock, like she just now figured it out. How is it possible that she didn't know what Edward was protesting to?
“N-n-n-n-n,” Bella tried to protest.
“Don't be stupid,” I said, exasperated. “Don't you like having ten toes?”
I finished cramming my body into the bag and brought the zipper back up. It was extremely tight, however the moment my body heat reached her Bella lost what little resolve she had to try and fight it. I rolled onto my side and wrapped my arms around her, pulling her tight to my chest. It would have been fantastic feeling her body pressed to mine, but I cringed when her icy fingers grazed my skin. I would flinch, not from the cold feeling, but because she was almost as cold as Edward when he had touched me. With her cold skin, stiff muscles from not moving, and the sick smell throughout the tent, it was a vivid reminder that she would be like him soon. It made me feel sick and I hated it.
“Jeez, you're freezing, Bella.”
“S-s-s-s-sorry,” she stuttered.
“Try to relax,” her body was so tense from being so cold and another violent shiver shook her body, I wanted her to be the soft warm Bella that I loved and not this frozen rock as quickly as possible. “You'll be warm in a minute. Of course, you'd warm up faster if you took your clothes off.”
“That's just a simple fact,” I defended. “Survival one-oh-one.”
“C-c-cut it out, Jake,” she said angrily, but stayed glued to my chest. “N-n-n-nobody really n-n-n-needs all ten t-t-t-toes.”
“Don't worry about the bloodsucker,” I suggested smugly. “He's just jealous.”
“Of course I am, you don't have the faintest idea how much I wish I could do what you're doing for her, mongrel.” His voice was controlled and the worst sound ever, I hated his voice.
I hadn't really expected him to answer honestly. “Those are the breaks,” I said lightly, Bella moved brushing her cold hand against me once again reminding me again of what her future would be with him. “At least you know she wishes it was you.”
“True,” Edward agreed.
Bella was very slowly warming, I was surprised that it was taking this long and I would rub her back trying to help her to warm more quickly.
“There,” I said, pleased. “Feeling better?”
“Yes.” She said for the first time not stuttering.
Her body's shuddering stopped and I watched her starting to relax, but her face was still really cold. “Your lips are still blue,” I mused. “Want me to warm those up for you too? You only have to ask.”
Edward sighed heavily and I bit my cheeks to try and keep from smirking, but it didn't work.
“Behave yourself,” Bella muttered and pressed her face into my shoulder. It was really cold and I flinched, but still loved having her soft lips against my skin. It didn't take much longer for Bella get warm enough to kick her boots off and pressed her icy feet against me, I have never felt a person as cold as Bella was. I tried to cover her with as much of me as I could and rested my cheek against her ear.
As Bella dethawed she began to relax and I rolled over to my back and tucked her into my side and her head rested against my chest, with one arm wrapped around my waist and one of her legs over mine. I rested my arms around on her back and for a moment I thought she had fallen asleep. “Jake?” she mumbled sleepily. “Can I ask you something? I'm not trying to be a jerk or anything, I'm honestly curious.”
“Sure,” I chuckled remembered using the same words to her.
“Why are you so much furrier than your friends? You don't have to answer if I'm being rude.”
“Because my hair is longer,” I said, amused and shaking my hair.
“Oh.” She seemed surprised by such a simple answer. “Then why don't you cut it? Do you like to be shaggy?”
Such a simple question, with such a complicated answer. I remembered how sad it seemed to make Bella when I had cut my hair and I got the impression that she liked me better with longer hair.
Edward laughed. Stay out of my head!
“Sorry,” Bella paused to yawn. “I didn't mean to pry. You don't have to tell me.”
I knew Edward heard it all. “Oh, he'll tell you anyways, so I might as well . . . I was growing my hair out because . . . it seemed like you liked it better long.”
“Oh,” I could feel her tense some from being awkward. “I, er, like it both ways, Jake. You don't need to be . . . inconvenienced.”
I shrugged. “Turns out it was very convenient tonight, so don't worry about it.”
She relaxed against my shoulder and I could feel her body soften as she was getting more sleep. “That's right, honey, go to sleep,” I whispered.
“Seth is here,” Edward murmured to me.
“Perfect. Now you can keep an eye on everything else, while I take care of your girlfriend for you.”
“Stop it,” Bella muttered as she settled deeper into me, she shifted to get more comfortable causing her body to rub against me as she settled back against me with one arm draped over my waist. I closed my eyes and began to imagine what it would be like to be able to hold her like this all the time and to really feel her. I ran my fingers through her hair and wondered if she had taken her clothes off earlier what it would have been like, it would have been the perfect opportunity to be able to feel her beautiful skin. I felt the soft skin on her hand and imagined the same softness as I brought my hand down her arm.
“Please!” Edward hissed. “Do you mind!”
“What?” I whispered back, surprised that he was paying attention.
“Do you think that you could attempt to control your thoughts?”
“No one said you had to listen,” I muttered, I had sort of forgotten he was still here. “Get out of my head.”
“I wish I could. You have no idea how loud your little fantasies are. It's like you're shouting them at me.”
“I'll try to keep it down,” I whispered sarcastically, like there was really a volume control on thoughts. He is just jealous because I could actually do something with Bella without actually killing her.
“Yes, I'm jealous of that, too.” He answered my unspoken comment.
“I figured it was like that,” I whispered smugly. “Sort of evens the playing field up a little, doesn't it?”
Edward chuckled. “In your dreams.”
Exactly! “You know, she could still change her mind,” I taunted. “Considering all the things I could do with her that you can't. At least, not without killing her, that is.”
“Go to sleep, Jacob,” Edward murmured. “You're starting to get on my nerves.”
“I think I will. I'm really very comfortable.” I held Bella a little tighter and thought about going to sleep, but it really bothered me that he kept poking around in my head and I couldn't get into his. There were so many things that I would love to ask if he were to give me the chance. It really wasn't fair at all, and I wondered if he would let me know his perspective.
“Maybe I would.” Edward said, it was still strange him answering my unspoken thoughts.
“But would you be honest?” Cause I know I wouldn't be, if I had a choice.
“You can always ask and see.” Edward taunted.
“Well, you see inside my head – let me see inside yours tonight, it's only fair,” I said.
“Your head is full of questions. Which one do you want me to answer?”
“The jealousy . . . it has to be eating at you. You can't be as sure of yourself as you seem. Unless you have no emotions at all.”
“Of course, it is,” Edward agreed, no longer amused. “Right now it's so bad that I can barely control my voice. Of course, it's even worse when she's away from me, with you, and I can't see her.” Well that at least explains why he is staying in the tent.
“Do you think about it all the time?” I whispered. “Does it make it hard to concentrate when she's not with you?” I know it does me.
“Yes and no,” he answered honestly. “My mind doesn't work quite the same as yours. I can think of many more things at one time. Of course, that means that I'm always able to think of you, always able to wonder if that's where her mind is, when she's quiet and thoughtful.”
Does she think of me very often?
“Yes, I would guess that she thinks about you often. More often than I like. She worries that you're unhappy. Not that you don't know that. Not that you don't use that.”
“I have to use whatever I can,” I muttered, and it's true, this hasn't been easy for me. “I'm not working with your advantages – advantages like her knowing that she's in love with you.”
“That helps,” Edward agreed in a mild tone.
Yeah it does! “She's in love with me, too, you know.” Edward remained silent. I sighed. “But she doesn't know it.”
“I can't tell you if you're right.”
“Does that bother you? Do you wish you could see what she's thinking, too?”
“Yes . . . and no, again. She likes it better this way, and, though it sometimes drives me insane, I'd rather she was happy.”
The wind ripped around the tent, shaking it like an earthquake and I wrapped Bella tighter to me to keep her from shaking with it. “Thank you,” Edward whispered. “Odd as this might sound, I suppose I'm glad you're here, Jacob.”
You are an odd, bloodsucker. You know that, right? “You mean, 'as much as I'd loved to kill you, I'm glad she's warm,' right?”
“It's an uncomfortable truce, isn't it?”
“I knew you were just as crazy jealous as I am.”
“I'm not such a fool as to wear it on my sleeve like you do. It doesn't help your case, you know.”
“You have more patience than I do.”
“I should. I've had a hundred years to gain it. A hundred years of waiting for her.” That would suck, but thats what he gets for being a bloodsucker.
“So . . . at what point did you decide to play the very patient good guy?” Somehow at the same time that I became the inpatient, jerk.
“When I saw how much it was hurting her to make her choose. It's not usually this difficult to control. I can smother the . . . less civilized feelings I may have for you fairly easily most of the time. Sometimes I think she sees through me, but I can't be sure.”
Yeah, I doubt that. You have no idea how perfect she thinks you are. “I think you were just worried that if you really forced her to choose, she might not choose you.”
Edward was silent for a moment. “That was a part of it,” he finally admitted. “But only a small part. We all have our moments of doubt. Mostly I was worried that she'd hurt herself trying to sneak away to see you. After I accepted that she was more or less safe with you – as safe as Bella ever is – it seemed best to stop driving her to extremes.”
I sighed. “I'd tell her all this, but she'd never believe me.”
“I know.” Edward smiled, so sure of himself.
“You think you know everything,” I muttered.
“I don't know the future,” Edward said, and for a moment I could hear the uncertainty in his voice.
I remained on my back looking up at the ceiling, even while talking to Edward I didn't really need to look at him to talk with him. Our conversation went quiet and I thought about going to sleep, but I knew that I would never have this opportunity with Edward again.
“What would you do if she changed her mind?” I asked.
“I don't know that either.”
I chuckled quietly, careful to not move Bella when I laughed. “Would you try to kill me?” I added sarcastically, not really sure if he could or not.
“Why not?” It surprised me that he said so certainly that he wouldn't, like he knew that he could if he wanted, but was choosing not to.
“Do you really think I would hurt her that way?”
Damn, he's good. I sighed. “Yeah, you're right. I know that's right. But sometimes . . .”
“Sometimes it's an intriguing idea.”
I turned my head into the sleeping bag to muffle my laughter, and Bella's body shook against my laughter. “Exactly,” I eventually agreed.
The wind continued to blow and shake the tent, I looked down at the beautiful girl sleeping in my arms and knew that I never wanted to let her go, but once day broke she would be his once again and I would be loosing her.
“What's it like? Losing her?” I asked quietly, my voice thick with emotion. “When you thought that you'd lost her forever? How did you . . . cope?”
“That's very difficult for me to talk about.” I waited quietly and he continued, speaking slowly. “There were two different times that I though that. The first time, when I thought I could leave her . . . that was . . . almost bearable. Because I thought she would forget me and it would be like I hadn't touched her life. For over six months I was able to stay away, to keep my promise that I wouldn't interfere again. It was getting close – I was fighting but I knew I wasn't going to win; I would have come back . . . just to check on her. That's what I would have told myself, anyways. And if I'd found her reasonably happy . . . I like to think that I could have gone away again.”
“But she wasn't happy. And I would have stayed. That's how she convinced me to stay with her tomorrow, of course. You were wondering about that before, what could possibly motivate me . . . what she was feeling so needlessly guilty about. She reminded me of what it did to her when I left – what it still does to her when I leave. She feels horrible about bringing that up, but she's right. I'll never be able to make up for that, but I'll never stop trying anyway.”
I laid quietly, thinking about what Edward had shared, I thought about when Bella left me to go rescue him, it was still extremely painful, we had been getting so close before everything just blew to pieces. “And the other time – when you thought she was dead?” I whispered roughly, knowing that my Bella would be dead if she went with the plan to be changed.
“Yes, it will probably feel like that to you, won't it? The way you perceive us, you might not be able to see her as Bella anymore. But that's who she'll be.”
I was irritated that once again he answered my head, instead of the question that I asked. “That is not what I asked.”
Edward's voice came back fast and hard. “I can't tell you how it felt. There aren't words.”
I flexed my arms around Bella holding her tighter to me. “But you left because you didn't want to make her a bloodsucker. You want her to be human.”
Edward explained what he considered to be the four options of what could happen once he realized that he loved Bella. Hearing him explain himself, I was amazed by how much thought he put into what he should do in regards to Bella. His feelings for her were so clear, and I hated it. Thinking that he just wanted her for her blood was so much easier than to admit that he also only wanted what was best for Bella.
“I like option one,” I muttered, where he wasn't in her life at all and she moved on with someone else. Edward remained quiet. “You know exactly how much I hate to accept this,” I whispered quietly, “but I can see that you do love her . . . in your way. I can't argue with that anymore. Given that, I don't think you should give up on the first alternative, not yet. I think there's a very good chance that she would be okay. After time. You know, if she hadn't jumped off a cliff in March . . . and if you'd waited another six months to check on her . . . Well, you might have found her reasonably happy. I had a game plan.”
I imagined what it would have been like if we had cliff dived together like we were suppose to. I would hold her hand as we leaped over the edge and would hold her close as we swam to the shore. She was getting so much better that I knew it wouldn't have been much longer before we would have kissed. I remembered her smile, the way she would light up when she saw me, and the love that she had for me reflected in her eyes, the way that we would laugh together and could make a comedy out of anything, even a horror film.
Edward chuckled. “Maybe it would have worked. It was a well thought-out plan.”
“Yeah.” I sighed. “But . . . with more time I know I could make it work, give me a year, bl – Edward. I really think I could make her happy. She's stubborn, no one knows that better than I do, but she's capable of healing. She would have healed before. And she could be human, with Charlie and Renee, and she could grow up, and have kids and . . . be Bella.” I wanted that so badly, not just for myself, but for her as well. “You love her enough that you have to see the advantages of that plan. She thinks you're very unselfish . . . are you really? Can you consider the idea that I might be better for her than you are?”
“I have considered it,” he answered quietly. “In some ways, you would be better suited for her than another human. Bella takes some looking after, and you're strong enough that you could protect her from herself, and from everything that conspires against her. You have done that already, and I'll owe you for that for as long as I live – forever – whichever comes first . . .” Once again I was amazed by how much thought he has put into Bella's life, there wasn't much more that he could do without knowing the future.
“I even asked Alice if she could see that – see if Bella would be better off with you. She couldn't, of course. She can't see you, and then Bella's sure of her course, for now.” It would have been nice if that psychic could have worked in my favor for once, but it made sense that she wouldn't know anything more.
Edward continued, “but I'm not stupid enough to make the same mistake I made before, Jacob. I won't try to force her into that first option again. As long as she wants me, I'm here.”
“And if she were to decide that she wanted me?” I challenged. “Okay, it's a long shot, I'll give you that.”
“I would let her go.”
“Just like that?”
“In the sense that I'd never show her how hard it was for me, yes. But I would keep watch. You see, Jacob, you might leave her someday. Like Sam and Emily, you wouldn't have a choice. I would always be waiting in the wings, hoping for that to happen.”
Damn imprinting, I snorted in disgust. “Well, you've been much more honest than I had any right to expect . . . Edward.” It was so weird calling him by his name. “Thanks for letting me in your head.”
“As I said, I'm feeling oddly grateful for your presence in her life tonight. It was the least I could do . . . You know, Jacob, if it weren't for the fact that we're natural enemies and that you're also trying to steal away the reason for my existence, I might actually like you.”
“Maybe . . .” if you weren't such a freak, I mean “if you weren't a disgusting vampire who was planning to suck out the life of the girl I love . . .” who am I kidding? “well, no, not even then.”
Edward chuckled. “Can I ask you something?” he said after a moment.
“Why would you have to ask?”
“I can only hear if you think of it. It's just a story that Bella seemed reluctant to tell me about the other day. Something about a third wife . . . ?”
“What about it?” I ran through the story in my head, the fight with the Cold Ones and her great sacrifice. Edward hissed. “What?” I demanded again.
“Of course,” he seethed and I couldn't understand what he was so upset about. “Of course! I rather wish your elders had kept that story to themselves, Jacob.”
“You don't like the leeches being painted as the bad guys?” I mocked. “You know, they are. Then and now.”
“I really couldn't care less about that part. Can you guess which character Bella would identify with?”
I thought of it a moment, the human woman that didn't have any magic except for courage and sacrificing herself. “Oh. Ugh. The third wife. Okay, I see your point.”
“She wants to be there in the clearing. To do what little she can, as she puts it.” He sighed. “That was the secondary reason for my staying with her tomorrow. She's quite inventive when she wants something.”
“You know, your military brother gave her the idea just as much as the story did.”
“Neither side meant any harm,” Edward whispered, clearly making peace on both sides.
“And when does this little truce end?” I asked. “First light? Or do we wait until after the fight?” We both thought about it for a moment and knew that we wouldn't be able to last much longer.
“First light,” we whispered together, and then laughed quietly.
“Sleep well, Jacob,” Edward murmured. “Enjoy the moment.”
Oh, I will. I relaxed further allowing one arm to remain on her back and the other rested on her thigh that was draped over my leg. I traced my hand down and up her leg and it felt really good and I held her tightly to me.
Edward groaned softly. “I didn't mean that quite so literally.”
“Sorry,” I whispered. “You could leave, you know – give us a little privacy.”
“Would you like me to help you sleep, Jacob?” he offered.
“You could try,” I said, unconcerned. “It would be interesting to see who walked away, wouldn't it?”
“Don't tempt me to far, wolf. My patience isn't that perfect.”
Finally admitting a flaw, uh? I laughed quietly. “I'd rather not move just now, if you don't mind.”
Edward starting humming, who the hell hums? If I seriously wasn't so comfortable I would have punched him in the face.
- The pain when Edward touches Jacob's skin is based on the concept of dry ice. If you have ever felt it it really hurts to touch and I feel the contrasting temperature between Edward and Jacob would be like that. So therefore it would also be physically painful if/when Bella becomes a vampire and so touching her would no longer be a pleasant experience.
Author's Note - I know that there are a lot of expectations for this chapter and because of that it was a hard chapter to write. I really hope that I was able to meet those expectations.