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Dream's Shadow

Summary:
This is my take on the over- and usually poorly- done plot. Edward leaves Bella again. She is changed and they meet again in the future. There will be a big twist! Requested by Iris. Banner by Iris!


Notes:
Try it! I know stories like this usually stink, but I thought I'd give it a try. I own nothing. Stephenie Meyer owns all.


84. Chapter 84

Rating 4.5/5   Word Count 600   Review this Chapter

“Hello. I’m Claire,” she says softly. “Thanks for coming.”

“Thanks for inviting me! I’m Bella, as I’m sure you’ve guessed.”

“The vampire.”

“Yeah.” I survey her carefully, trying to decide whether or not it’s freaking her out… it is pretty abnormal. Then again, she’s marrying a werewolf. She, like me, is probably quite good with weird.

She looks different than I pictured her. I imagined her as a baby, of course, at first, and in these last few days as a beauty, like Emily.

More like Kim than Emily, I’d say. Her nose is a little too big, her eyebrows oddly shaped.

Yet she has a strong face, not in features, but something in her eyes, like she’s seen more than she lets on and understood it all.

She nods slowly. “You’re bizarrely attractive. You know that, right?”

“Vampire thing.” I grin. “So… “ I search for an icebreaker. “Getting married in two weeks. How does it feel?”

“You know. You’re married to what’s his face.”

I don’t bother to correct her. “Edward.” It’s actually nice to pretend I’m living the life I should have. Like I am Isabella Cullen, married vampire, like his promise was never broken, like I got my happily ever after right on schedule. “You’re pretty nervous.”

“Yeah. I don’t know why. It’s not like I wasn’t planning on marrying him someday… it’s always been part of my future. But now… it’s just so soon.”

“I understand. I didn’t want to marry Edward. Not because I don’t love him. I always did. But I didn’t want to get married.”

She smiles, understanding. “Come on in, Bella.”

I follow her into a tiny apartment, noting the absence of werewolf reek, though the furniture (and Claire herself) smell vaguely of dog and rotting garbage. I wrinkle my nose.

“Something smell bad?”

“Werewolf,” I explain. “It’s all over the place.”

She looks vaguely confused, but then snickers. “Oh. Want me to grab some Febreze?”

“I doubt that would make a difference. Thanks for the offer, though.”

There is a brief and extremely awkward pause. If I weren’t such a naturally antisocial person, I’m sure I could figure out something (anything!) to say. I have no such luck. After a minute, she says, “Can I ask you something… personal?”

“Sure.” I’m not sure what facets of my life even warrant such a warning, so I’m perhaps a little too quick to agree.

“Quil mentioned… that Edward… left you.”

I nod. “Yes. Twice.” Not my favorite subject of conversation, but I can keep the pain to a minimum. I can stay very, very calm and answer whatever she wants to know.

Right?

Yeah right.

“I have a confession to make.” She idly twirls a piece of hair around her finger. It’s a nervous gesture I can identify with- I used to bite my fingernails in similar moments. “I… broke up with Quil. For a variety of reasons, and for a brief amount of time. I didn’t last long without him. I couldn’t. But I’ll never understand how he could forgive me so quickly. So effortlessly. He just took me back and never mentioned it again. I can’t ask him. It hurts him too much. Can I ask you… how… how could you forgive Edward? How could Quil forgive me?”

I struggle for the right words as the air swims around my empty head, fighting the pain that brings me down.