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Love Her

Summary:
SEQUEL TO PROTECT HER. Quil is Claire's, heart and soul. At last, she is old enough for him to pursue hers... but can she overcome the terror and demons of her past to find true love?


Notes:
I disclaim. This story is stolen from Ms. Meyer's beautiful universe. it is all hers, so please don't sue me. right. enjoy. oh, i reccomend you read Protect Her first. And review it. after every chapter. well, once at least. but seriously, read it or this will make no sense. and thanks to all the people who read, reviewed, and encouraged me on Protect Her. I couldn't have written it without the continuous support i found, and i hope this story will get a similar response.


1. Chapter 1

Rating 4.5/5   Word Count 551   Review this Chapter

She was a woman now. Sixteen years old, not a frightened mouse of a girl. Tall and beautiful. Beyond beautiful. I was not the only one enamored of my Claire.

I was, however, the only male she would speak to, aside from the occasional teacher—and then only under duress. I was the only one she trusted.

In the six wonderful years Claire had lived with me, I had worked hard to regain that trust. Although she might protest that the things that happened to her… the things I allowed to be done to her… when she was a little girl weren’t my fault, I couldn’t stem the guilt. She was afraid and hurt because of something I could have prevented.

At least I didn’t have to fight the urge to kill her boyfriends. She’d never had one. I allowed my bulk to silently threaten any friends who teased her about it, but Claire was the kind of person who made friendships to last. She had few acquaintances, only true compatriots.

With her permission, I had told her three best friends, Tina, Kati, and Aliena the story.

Not my part in it, not the murder, but the less gory details of what her father had done.

They didn’t tease her after that.

Of course, I didn’t know all of what had happened myself, only what I could infer from her injuries and what he had told me on the day I killed him. Claire’s trust went not quite that far.

Not that I blame her!

Not that I could.

But still, I burned with curiousity.

And also was haunted. I had the most horrendous nightmares sometimes. Usually on the same nights Claire had hers. Those nights I slept in her room. Don’t look at me like that, there’s a couch. I would never do that to her. Not after what he already did.

I slept there to reassure her. To be there if she needed me. But I couldn’t fight the monsters of her dreams, and I couldn’t punch a soft scream that pierces the night like my own heart being rent in two…

Claire, if only I had known! I would have never let him touch you.

She knew, though I never had the courage to speak those words, to bring back the memory of fear that would stab her soft eyes with pain…

And silent guilt was not enough to stop my nightmares.

They always started out the same… just Claire.

I was always so glad to see her beauty, even asleep. She was usually fairly young in my dreams, the innocent baby of two she’d been when I first met her (okay, so met is a pretty simple word for something that changed both our lives forever) though sometimes she was the beautiful woman she’d become.

She would whisper, “I love you.”

I would be powerless to answer.

And then the screaming would begin. My dream-Claire would yell. “No! No! Don’t! Don’t! No! Don’t hurt me!”

He was never there. There was no enemy for me to fight. Nothing I could see, and I could not move to comfort her.

Once, my worst nightmare had been true.