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Burn Beautiful

Summary:
Spoiler warning. Continuation of New Moon. Being a vampire comes with it's own problems: newfound bloodlust, untried strength, neverending fights between natural vampire will and human conscience. Edward and Bella's relationship takes a completely new turn as challenges fly their way. Namely, a pack of furious werewolves and a certain vampire named Victoria, who's still set on vengeance and, this time, gains some powerful followers determined to end Bella, vampire or not, and do as much damage to Forks as possible.


Notes:
I just finished New Moon and I know I SHOULD wait until Eclipse comes out, but I had to do something to pass the time! Especially since I had about a million ideas running through my head, mainly around how much could happen once Bella IS a vampire. What happens with Victoria, werewolves, Volturi? What's her special ability, if she has one at all? How does she go about realizing her ability? How does she deal with vampire instincts? What about her parents? AHH, idea overflow! I've outlined this entire story and it's turning up to be pretty much novel long, which is exciting. I'm not new to writing, I've just never done this particular "fandom" before and I hope I do it justice.


7. Chapter 7

Rating 3.4/5   Word Count 2766   Review this Chapter

Disclaimer: As usual, I own nothing.

Author's Note: For those of you who don't know, I just opened an awards site for Twilight Fanfiction with Mimbley! Make sure you visit and nominate your favorite stories. Details are at the end of the chapter =].

Ch. 7: Thirst

I don't know what woke me first, the pleasant tingling at the base of my neck or the horrible rumbling at the pit of my stomach. The tingling was nice, but the rumbling soon claimed my entire attention. God, it was like a beast inside me, thriving and clawing around, begging to get fed, and I had to muffle a scream before it eased away. My eyes were still closed and I wasn't sure if I should open them. I didn't know what I would find.

Edward was lying behind me on his side, kissing along my hairline, and that should have been all that mattered. But it wasn't. There was so much more than Edward in the room, so much more than his cool touch. There was the scurrying of mice behind the walls, the scratching sound as a lost ant scuttled across the floor, the vibrations of the earth below me,… the squeaking of the bed was atrocious. I didn't even open my eyes and already, I felt like I was a living magnifying glass.

It was hard to comprehend anything. I vaguely remembered the pain, the burning, Edward kissing me then biting… biting…

Flashback

"Bella,…" he whispered, holding me close and backing me into the room. My eyes were shut tight and my face was pressed against his chest.

"Where are you taking me?" I demanded, half joking, half serious. Then, I was unceremoniously dropped on a bed. I would have burst out laughing if it I hadn't had something hard pressed against my back.

"What is this?" I frowned and opened my eyes, reaching a hand behind me. It came in contact with the cold chains Carlisle and Jasper had been setting up earlier. I had known why they were setting it up, but it didn't hit me then as it had hit me just now.

Edward stared back at me. His neck was stiff and his back was rigid. His entire body was as still as a statue and his eyes never wavered from mine.

"You don't have to do this," he lifted one knee onto the bed and moved closer to me. "We can figure out another way. You can back out right now."

I looked into his desperate eyes, shining now with non-existent tears. My hand moved to touch his cold, firm cheekbones, trace the worry lines on his face and I shook my head.

"No, I can't," I told him in a low voice and moved an inch forward to press my lips lightly against his. He felt like a boulder in my embrace and I backed away sighing.

For a long moment, he stayed like that, staring sadly into my eyes. It was almost like he had given up hope. Then finally, his features softened and he took me in his arms.

"No going back after this, understood?" he mumbled into my hair.

"Yes. No regrets after this?"

He didn't answer, just held me even closer.

Carlisle appeared at the door and lightly knocked on the wall. Edward didn't even turn around to acknowledge his presence.

"Edward…" he began, but Edward shook his head.

"I know, just wait outside the room and give me a few moments," he directed the statement towards Carlisle, but kept looking at me. Carlisle must've understood what he meant because all he did was nod once, give me a small smile, then turned back around to the hallway.

Edward laid me down on the bed and my breathing hitched as I watched him climb towards me. He propped himself up on his arms and hovered over my body for a little while before leaning in and kissing me softly on the cheek.

"I'll try to make it as painless as possible," he murmured in my ear. Then he chuckled, the most mournful sound I've ever heard. "It'll be far from painless, though."

I didn't say anything and he kept kissing me, pressing his cold lips to my nose, my forehead, along my jaw and down my throat. The entire time, I was as still as I've ever been in my entire life. Except for the shaking. Nothing could keep me from trembling as his mouth glided along the side of my neck.

It was then when he gave me my first kiss. At first, it was simple, a caress of his lips on mine. Then, when he lingered longer than he normally did, I sighed - a very natural reaction on my part. He took that opportunity and opened his mouth, letting his tongue slide across my lips and into my mouth.

All I could do was stop breathing. I was that surprised. But I wasn't stupid, not by far. I knew enough to take advantage of the situation and kissed him back as well as I knew how. Which really wasn't much, but there was no way a kiss with Edward could be bad, so I let my instincts take over.

The intensity of the kiss grew and soon, we were both breathing heavily, yet ignoring the need - my need - for air. Our mouths fused together, tongues joined, and that was when I felt the cut. The first slice on my lower lip.

I wasn't the one to notice the sting, though. The only reason I realized he bit me was because he had suddenly pulled back and held both hands over his nose and mouth. His eyes were screwed shut and he looked like he was counting something in his head. That was when I felt the trickle of blood slide down my chin.

"Carlisle!" Edward called and in less than a second, Carlisle appeared next to the bed, ready to step in if something bad happened. He leaned over and inspected the cut.

"You need to take more," he said, his voice grave and serious. "It'll take too long."

Edward looked at me and exhaled deeply. Then, he slowly lowered his head to my neck and sank his cold, sharp teeth in my flesh.

End Flashback

I shivered as the memories came back, falling into place piece by piece. Edward shifted behind me, causing the springs on the bed to make an agonizing squeak. I squeezed my eyes shut. The noise was horrible and my hands flew to my ears, trying to muffle out the sharp, high sound.

"Sorry," he whispered, covering my hands with his. "I forgot. The first few days after the change, everything seems a million times clearer. You'll get used to it and in a few weeks, it wont even bother you anymore."

I felt like gasping. It was Edward. Of course it was Edward - I already knew that. But hearing him speak was a different thing entirely. I've always noticed his velvety voice, soft and nearly touchable, but what was that… other sound? It was almost like a purr coming from the back of his throat, so quiet it was barely audible. I never noticed that before. Had it always been there?

I wanted to ask him about it, but my mouth was dry and my teeth were sore. In fact, my entire body felt dry and empty, as if the fluids inside me were already draining out, slowly and surely, leaving the organs and bones inside to rub against each other. What I needed was water, a nice sparkling ice cold lake of water.

"How are you feeling?"

Edward's tone was extra quiet and so gentle that I would've laughed if I hadn't been hurting. That was my Edward; considerate, perpetually worried, and whispering because he knew that I couldn't handle the loud noise.

"I'm - thirsty," my voice cracked and I licked my lips, trying to moisten them. It was no use. My tongue was dry. "Water would be really good right now."

Edward stiffened slightly before pulling back to look at my face. His topaz eyes were shining, obviously worried about something - most likely one of those insane problem his overworked brain developed on its own. But, for some reason, I wasn't surprised. It seemed as if he was always worrying about something these days. After what seemed like ages, he brushed his fingers across my cheeks, right under my eyes. It felt odd; somehow different. His fingers still felt cold against my skin, but it was lacking that shocking ice sensation that I've always associated with his touch. I wondered whether I liked it or not and couldn't come up with a straight answer. For one, I've always loved the way his cool body felt against mine, especially during those hot summer nights. But then again, this new type of cold was not bad. In fact, it was… good.

"Water's not what you need," he shook his head and sighed. At first, I was confused. Then I realized.

"So this is what it feels like," I murmured before glancing up at him with a frown. "How come the idea of drinking blood still manages to gross me out?"

"You haven't smelled anything living yet."

"Oh."

Edward brushed a strand of hair away from my face and smiled. "Still so casual about it. You don't take anything seriously, do you?"

"I do. Some things," I slowly sat up, wincing at the delicious ache in my back.

"Really." He didn't sound convinced.

"Sure. I take you seriously. Being with you always. That's serious, isn't it?"

"You are committed," his voice was mocking and I smacked at his chest, annoyed. Before, whenever I smacked him, he would take both of my wrists in his hands and hold them up, grinning as I struggled to get away. So, I wasn't ready for his body to actually shift from the force of my hand on his chest and nearly toppled over when he fell to his side.

"Hey!" he protested, glaring and grinning at the same time. "What was that for?" I stared. I really don't know…

"Sorry."

Edward just rolled his eyes. "Still as clumsy as ever, I see." My face burned up and he reached out to touch my cheek. "You can still turn pink… a little."

"Dang. I was hoping I'd outgrown that by now."

"Outgrown what? Clumsiness or blushing?"

"Both," I admitted, sighing and inching over to the edge of the bed. Where were all those vampire perks? Why wasn't I moving like a prima ballerina? Why didn't I have the grace of a cat? And why, why, why, was I still turning red?

"It wont last forever," Edward smiled, tracing the frown lines across my forehead. "You only blush now because your old blood is still coursing through your body. And the clumsiness - well, maybe that'll last forever."

I raised my fist to playfully strike him again, but this time he anticipated it and caught my arm, holding it away.

"I don't think so," he laughed, then yanked me close to him. I laughed softly then winced. The aching feeling in my stomach suddenly jabbed at me then continued on, ten times stronger than before. It was growing and I needed the… the water.

I gulped at the thought of anything else besides water and nearly choked. I just couldn't think of it as blood. I couldn't even imagine it as blood. I needed water. Water.

Just then, I heard light footsteps fly up the stairs and Alice appeared at the doorway less than a blink of an eye later.

"You're up!" She exclaimed, her mouth stretching into a delighted smile. "How're you feeling?"

"Thirsty," I answered, taking a deep, deliberate breath, trying to soothe the ache.

Her smile faltered a bit and I quickly corrected myself. "For water," I clarified. I heard Edward let out a sigh behind me and get up from his place on the bed.

"That's what she thinks," he said, sounding exhausted. Alice looked at him for a long hard second before nodding and smiling again.

"I'll be right back with - "

"Oh, it's okay. I'll go downstairs," I cut her off, stretching to my feet and moving towards the door.

I followed Alice down the hall and Edward stayed close behind, letting his hand gently rest against my back, then trailing it along to hold onto my hip, then splayed his fingers out against the side of my waist. He was touching me somewhere the entire time and I was starting to get unnecessary shivers.

"Where's everyone else?" I asked, noticing the silent house. Well, as silent as it could be, what with the sound of water dripping from the faucet in the kitchen, the scratching of insects against the insides of the walls, the symphony of birds in the backyard, the -

"Hunting," Alice answered. That made sense. I leaned against the railing of the stairs as we walked down, wondering when they would include me in their next hunting trip. Suddenly, there was a low groan followed by the sharp, cracking sound of wood breaking. Uh oh…

Edward tightened his grip on me and Alice turned around to stare at me with incredulous eyes. I quickly let go of the stair rail.

"Oh," I muttered, looking at the splinters of wood where my hand had been. "Sorry."

"You'll get used to it," Edward told me, taking my hand in his. "It took me almost a week to grow accustom to the new strength."

"Until then, don't touch anything in the house," Alice joked, turning back around.

In the kitchen, Alice filled up a tall glass with tap water and handed it to me. Both she and Edward looked at me curiously as I brought the glass to my mouth and drained it in one gulp.

I waited for the cool comfort to come, for the moisture to sate the dry feeling in my body - but it never did. My forehead creased and I frowned.

"More," was all I managed.

Before Alice had the chance to refill the cup, I was at the sink, cupping my hands under the faucet and bringing the water to my lips as quickly as I could. I've never felt this need before, this painful, driving frenzy for more, more, more.

The more I drank, the thirstier I became; my mouth dry and sour, my tongue lapping futilely at the liquid.

I didn't even hear the backdoor open - didn't look up when the rest of the Cullens walked into the kitchen.

Somebody pulled my shoulders back and I shrieked, furious. This was something else I wasn't used to. This blind, bright anger. I absolutely hated myself, Edward, and everybody; most of all, I hated the damn water streaming uselessly from the rusty faucet that was hardly ever used. I hated myself because they were right. The water wasn't helping and never before in the time I knew Edward had I seriously contemplated what would happen if I ever had to drink blood.

I wouldn't do it. I couldn't do it. It wasn't about Emmett and strangling big bears, or Edward and mountain lions anymore. It was about the disgusting, vile dark maroon leaking from wounds and flowing into my mouth. I swore that it would never happen.

"Get off me," I snarled viciously, desperate to get back to the running water. I refused to believe that it wouldn't be enough. It had to be enough.

Just then, I looked up and saw my reflection against the glass window. The night outside was pitch black and I could see myself as clearly as if I had been staring into a mirror. I noticed the Cullen's behind me: Rosalie's drawn expression as she backed into a corner, Emmett and Jasper's stricken look, Alice and Edward's ashen faces, Carlisle and Esme's sad understanding, but most of all, I noticed the eyes staring back at me. The red eyes, so bright they were almost luminescent on the windowpane.

Author's Note: So, there's the first chapter of Vampire!Bella. It was incredibly hard to write - and I'm still not satisfied with it, but I figured I'd never be satisfied and might as well post it. Review! I'd like to know what you think!

Award's Site: http://awards.volturi.org is here! Click on the link, read the rules, and nominate! It's for Twilight Fanfiction and it's uber fun, so yeah. Go! (for those people who have crappy browsers: http://awards.volturi.org/index2.htm )