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Not Like This

Summary:
When Bella jumped off the cliff, Alice didn't see anything, and Jacob didn't make it back to the beach in time to pull her out of the sea when he did. What happens to Bella when no one is there to save her? May continue if you like it. R&R! (Be nice about the banner--it's my first time making one ^.^)


Notes:


6. Hope

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1452   Review this Chapter

“What’s happened to Charlie? What’s he been told?” I asked Edward when he came back and told us the campers would be fine.

Edward sighed, sinking onto the leather couch beside me. “He thinks you ran away, actually. I couldn’t bear to tell him you died, and I had hoped you could get your bloodlust under control relatively soon so that you can go back and visit him.”

I was confused. “Wait—I thought you told him I was sick.”

Edward nodded. “Right—a few of us went camping when Carlisle went to town for more medicine, and the general theory is that, while you were delirious, you somehow managed to get out of bed and out of the house. There were many search parties around the house while you were changing, but thankfully no one was close enough to hear you screaming,” Edward explained.

I was a little doubtful. “And everyone actually swallowed that story without a doubt?” I asked skeptically. “It sounds really hard to believe, to me.” Edward handed me a newspaper dated almost a week old.

Delirious Patient Leaves Hospital, Eludes Searchers For Hours read the headline. I skimmed over the article, feeling more and more assured.

A hospital patient that had come in with a very high fever had managed to rip out his IV and all the other monitoring equipment and left the hospital without anyone being the wiser. He was found a few hours later on a bus, still in a hospital gown, and brought back to the hospital. The article ended with a few doctors’ stories of crazy things their delirious patients had done, like trying to fish in a swimming pool and insisting they were in a different time and place, reliving memories.

I wasn’t quite satisfied, but if Charlie bought it and there hadn’t been a fake funeral, then I guessed it was alright. “No one’s asking questions as to why I haven’t been found?” I asked.

“Not really. Of course, the La Push wolves know the truth and are going through the motions of helping. The dog says he’s sorry for trying to help—did he really try to suck out the venom?” Edward asked, his face suddenly composed into a carefully blank look.

I nodded. “Yeah, why?”

Edward stood so swiftly I barely caught the movement. “What was he thinking? Do you realize he is the main reason you’re changed now? Carlisle might have been able to extract most of the venom had he not interfered! At most, you would probablyhave beensensitive to loud noises and bright lights!” he exploded.

“He was trying to help, Edward! If you were in his place, I’m sure you would have tried to help someone in pain like I was!” I said, trying to calm him down.

Edward shook his head, pacing. “No, I would know that wolf saliva only speeds the process, and I would have left you alone until someone that could help arrived!” he thundered, a low growl forming in his chest.

Anger shot through me as I jumped to my feet. “Jacob was only trying to help, Edward! You know better than I do that he did not want me to change! Where were you when I was in danger, anyway? If anything, blame yourself. This is your fault more than it is Jacob’s!” I growled. I heard everyone else in the house either gasp or hold their breaths, and instantly I felt horribly guilty for what I’d said.

Edward stopped midstride, his body stiffening. I could practically feel the anger rolling off of him in waves, along with hurt and resentment. “You’re right,” he said softly, so softly I barely heard him.

“No,” I said. “I shouldn’t have said that. If I hadn’t decided to jump off by myself, none of this would have happened. It’s not your fault.” Edward didn’t say anything—he wouldn’t face me, he wasn’t moving, nothing. Guilt flooded through me. “You know what, I’m just going to go for a walk. I’m sorry, Edward. I didn’t mean it,” I said.

“No. You stay here—I’ll take a walk,” he said, barring the doorway. “I’d rather you stay here, where the others can watch you. I’ll be back later,” he said, his perfect face crumpled in pain.

He left, shutting the bedroom door behind him. I closed my eyes in regret and hoped Edward didn’t do anything stupid while he was out. I sat back down on the couch, and noticed he’d left his phone behind.

Perfect—I could call Jacob, and tell him it wasn’t his fault. Maybe that would get rid of some of the guilt I was feeling.I dialed his number, and thankfully he answered, not Billy, on the first ring.

“Hello?”

“Jacob, it’s Bella,” I said, a small smile forming on my face.

“Bella, I’m so sorry! I should have just left your wounds alone—I thought I was being careful enough not to mix my spit with the venom—I’m so sorry!”

I had to smile as he kept apologizing profusely, nearing incoherence. “Jacob, hush. It’s okay; I know you were just trying to help. Don’t worry about making it up to me—you and the others took care of Victoria, and that’s all I really could have asked for,” I said.

“You sound… different.” Jacob finally said after a long silence. “It’s almost like you’re singing,”

I laughed. “I know; it’s really weird for me too. Listen, do you think we could still—you know… be friends? I know there’s a whole vampire vs. werewolf thing going on, but I really don’t have anything against you or the others there. You’re all my friends,” I said in a rush. “I don’t want to get caught up in this whole supernatural battle, or whatever this is,”

Jacob hesitated. “I don’t know, Bella,” he answered finally. “I didn’t make the rules, but if I could bend them I would. Especially because your… condition… is my fault. I’d have to see what Sam says—he would find out sooner or later if either one of us broke the treaty to meet up. And even then, I think you’d stink too much for me,” he added with a chuckle.

“I still plan on showering every day,” I shot back humorously. “Hopefully you do, too, and you dry off enough to avoid that wet dog smell!”

Jacob let out a short laugh that sounded more like a bark than anything. “Right,” he hooted. “If we can meet up, do me a favor and roll around in something that actually smells good first!”

A worrying thought hit me. “Jacob—is it instinct to hate each other?” I asked.

I heard him shift his weight and sigh into the phone. “I thought you knew that, Bella,” he finally answered. “I mean, pending what Sam says—and your head bloodsucker, too—we might not be able to see each other for awhile. We’re both pretty new at this, and I’m still adjusting. Hell, I almost changed when I saw Edward talking to Charlie, and I know he was just telling him you were sick, or whatever the story was before the runaway story came out.”

I grimaced. “I suppose,” I huffed. “Well, I’ll ask Carlisle if he’d let me go to the treaty line with Emmett to hold me back in case I lose it, I guess, but I really can’t see myself attacking you—you’re my best friend.”

“Okay. I’ll see if Sam would mind—he’s good at calming us all down,” Jacob consented.

A thought struck me. “Oh! I might be able to make it easier on you—you know how some vampires have those extra gifts?” I asked.

“You’ve got one? What is it?” Jacob asked, sounding a little wary.

“I promise I won’t use it against you—Alice said she thinks I can suppress my scent. That would help you stay human, right?” I asked, biting my lip.

Jacob breathed into the phone again, hurting my sensitive ears. “I guess it would,” he agreed. “I have to go—we’re doing some more runs to make sure the bloodsucker didn’t have anyone following her,” he said.

We hung up, and I couldn’t help the wide grin breaking out over my face. I might be able to see Jacob! With that thought in mind, I turned to go downstairs and find Carlisle.

I heard footsteps approaching the door, and sat back instead to let whoever was coming up into the room.

Unexpectedly, it was Carlisle, with a kind expression on his face. “I’m sorry, Bella,” he said. “I couldn’t help but overhear your part of the conversation. What would you like to talk to me about?”

I took a deep breath, and crossed my fingers. Even though I knew Carlisle was a compassionate person, I knew that what I was about to ask went against the very instincts vampires had.

It was still worth a try—if a vampire could suppress the thirst for human blood, they could suppress the instinct to fight a werewolf…

Right?