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Different Sorts

Summary:
Two strangers come to Forks, Washington to investigate rumors about vampires and werewolves. What they discover changes everything ... for them, and the people they meet. But is there really such a thing as "happily ever after" when death is involved?


Notes:
ATTENTION READERS: DO NOT STEAL MY STORIES. Someone has stolen some of my stories from this website and posted them as their own on fanfiction.net. It is plaigarism, it is stealing and it is illegal. Read, enjoy -- but don't steal. Buffy/Twilight series crossover Takes place after New Moon and post-series for Buffy. Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.


8. Chapter 8

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1471   Review this Chapter

* * *

Bella gasped, as if choking for air – or if blood was still clogging her throat. She coughed, and some of the red stuff landed on the carpet below her. She wheezed, as she tried to realize why her lungs ached so much. Her blackened eyes searched the room frantically. Finally, she met a familiar sight.

“Edward?”

His eyes were wide and frightened. He was at her side instantly, but he didn’t touch her yet – he was afraid to touch her. “Bella, I’m here,” he said.

She wheezed again, clutching at her stomach. “What did you do to me?” There was anger in her voice.

“Bella, I …”

She screamed out in agony and tore at her chest. She tried to stand but collapsed. She clutched her stomach again. “Everything … hurts. I’m aching inside … I can’t breathe … I’m so … hungry.” She was practically panting.

Before Edward could react, Buffy was at the door, a jar of blood in her hands. “I heard her wake up,” she said, handing the jar to Edward.

Carefully, he grasped Bella’s head and helped her swallow. She gagged at the taste, at first, but then gulped greedily until the jar was empty. She wiped her arm across her mouth, panting. Then she lay her head on the cool floor, her eyelids fluttering.

“I’ll bring up another jar,” Buffy said.

Edward had thought it odd that Spike stored his blood for daily consumption – he and his family only hunted every couple weeks to satiate their thirst. The notion of storing blood – even buying it from the butcher – was odd. But he was grateful, now, that there was a stash from which to feed Bella.

When Buffy returned, she brought the jar over to Edward, then knelt beside him as he fed it to Bella. Bella drank it all, then laid back down and closed her eyes.

“I don’t understand,” Edward said, frightened.

Buffy smiled gently and touched his arm. “Just give her time. It’s not easy to wake from the dead.”

“I don’t really remember what it was like for me,” he said.

“Just be grateful you didn’t have to climb out of a coffin.” Edward turned to face Buffy, startled by her comment. “I told you,” she said, “I’ve already died. Twice. The first time was only for a few minutes … but the second time … should have been permanent.”

“You woke up in a grave?”

Buffy nodded. As the memories came back to her, Edward saw them in her mind. The panic, her hands clawing through cloth and wood and dirt – pulling herself into the cold night. Afraid.

“I just don’t know why she’s still in pain – the transformation is over.”

“She’s still trying to breath,” Buffy said.

Edward looked down and saw Bella clutching her chest, tugging at her blouse and wheezing. He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her up. “Bella, stop,” he commanded.

Her eyes wandered the room frantically. “I can’t … breath …”

He nodded. “I know. Just stop trying.”

“But—“

“Just stop – it’ll be easier.”

He watched as she tried to calm herself and slowly her panting and wheezing grew slower – less frantic. Then her chest stopped rising and falling and a calm slowly fell over her face.

“Isn’t that better?”

She shook her head. “I don’t understand. Why can’t I breathe? Why aren’t I dead?”

Edward scowled. “Bella. You are dead.” Her eyes searched his for an answer. “Don’t you remember? The fight with Victoria … I bit you.”

Her eyes widened again and she shrank back from Edward, finally understanding. “You changed me.” He nodded. She grasped her temple in her hands and climbed back onto the sofa, sitting with her head bent low. “I’m dead.”

“You have to understand, Bella, it was the only way.”

She nodded. “No, I know. I wanted this. I remember I wanted this.”

He reached for her, but then thought better of it and pulled his hand back. “It wasn’t supposed to be like this. There was supposed to be more time. Bella, I’m sorry.”

“Can I go outside, please?” she asked, not meeting his eyes. “I’d like to go outside.”

“Of course,” he said. He stood aside and watched as she stalked out of the room, leaving him behind.

* * *

Bella leaned against the railing on the back porch of the Cullens’ house. She looked out at the trees and the light casting shadows through the leaves and branches. She practiced breathing. It felt odd. Her whole body felt strange. It ached in a strange, painless way.

She knew he was there before she saw him – before she heard him. “Don’t blame yourself,” she said, sadly, then turned to meet him face-to-face.

“I’m sorry …” he began.

Bella turned back to face the woods. Edward stood beside her – close, but not touching.

“I can’t feel my body,” she said. “I never paid much attention to the inner functions … but now, I ache everywhere there used to be life. My lungs, my heart, my veins … they’re all empty and unnecessary. It’s like my body misses them still. Like they should still be working. As if my heart still needed to pump blood to my limbs.”

“I thought we had more time,” Edward said. “I was going to explain everything to you – have Carlisle help me explain everything. I didn’t want it to be a mystery for you. I wanted to make it as easy as possible … as painless.”

“The pain,” Bella said, shrugging. “The pain wasn’t much – not during the transformation. My body was already broken. I was practically dead already. It was waking up.” Her eyes finally met his and he gasped. They were dark – like his – but the color was still deep, like mahogany. Her lips were rosy – as if stained by berries. And even her skin – now pale, like his – had a bit of color left in the cheeks. Edward had always thought Bella was beautiful – now she was radiant. He was overwhelmed by her presence.

“Can I … Bella, may I kiss you?” he said, awestruck.

Shyly, she nodded.

Edward reached out and grasped her cheeks in his hands, then bent his head low and touched their lips together. He could no longer hear her heartbeat change, but the sparks between them now was no comparison. Both their bodies were ice cold, but the heat between their lips could have melted snow. Bella still reacted the same – grasping and pulling him closer. But this time, Edward did not stiffen and push her away – he grabbed for her equally. It was truly the most powerful kiss they’d ever shared.

When they finally parted, Bella’s eyelids were fluttering and she’d forgotten to watch her breathing – she was panting again, trying to suck in air that she didn’t need.

Their foreheads lay together, but Edward pushed down on her shoulders. “Bella, your breathing.”

She nodded and began slowing her intake of air. “That was … incredible,” she said, finally.

For the first time in days, Edward laughed. “Yes,” he said, smiling. “It was. You’re incredible, too,” he said. “I bet your own mother wouldn’t recognize you.”

“Renee! Charlie!” she gasped, smacking her forehead. “Oh no!”

“It’s okay,” he said. “You left a note, explaining that you were going on the senior trip, after all.”

“Oh,” Bella said, relaxing. “Then we’ve got a few days – that trip was supposed to last until graduation day.”

Edward’s smile faded. “Actually … you were out of it for most of those days.”

“Edward,” she said, “how long until graduation?”

He shook his head. “You can’t go – you’re not used to being around people yet.”

“How long?” she insisted.

“It’s tomorrow.”

“No,” she yelled. “Edward, my mother is flying in today for the ceremony! My parents are expecting me to walk!”

“I’m sorry,” he replied, hanging his head. “I didn’t mean for it to happen this way. I told you, I thought we had more time. And my stupid plan …”

“You killed her, right?” Bella asked. “Victoria?”

He nodded. “We tore her to bits. Tiny, little bits.”

“But what do I tell my parents?” she asked, hopelessly.

“You don’t,” he said. “You’re dead.”

She turned on him fiercely. “Edward, no. No. We still have the wedding. My parents have to be at the wedding.”

“Bella …”

“My father has to walk me down the aisle. There have to be pictures.” She was close to tears now, practically pleading with Edward.

He grabbed her shaking hands and hushed her. “We’ll figure something out,” he said. “But you’ll have to say goodbye. Soon.”

She nodded sadly, resting her head against his chest.

* * *