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Emme Fenway's life is heating up, spurred on by her father's death and an impromptu move across the country.
That heat isn't the problem, though. The problem is that Quileute boy, and he's bringing a heat all his own...


2. Fresh Blood.

Rating 5/5   Word Count 2392   Review this Chapter

The following morning there were two things I was absolutely sure about.

One, my phone had speakers to kill. I had used it as an alarm clock the night before and it was loud.

Two, I already desperately missed Gatlinburg.

My mother and I had been crammed onto the fold out couch for the night, which wouldn’t have been too horrible a predicament if my mother could keep to her side of the bed. She seemed incapable of that, though, so I quickly relocated to the arm chair. My neck was aching before I had even slept a wink, and now it was burning with pain. Back home, we had lived comfortably in an enormous log home high above the city lights. By comfortably I mean that I had been the occupant of what amounted to a small apartment, two rooms with a Jack and Jill bathroom between them that I had filled to the brim with my belongings.

I was missing those two rooms terribly as I sorely made my way to the kitchen for a bowl of cereal. I yawned as I poured my cocoa puffs, and then blinked sleepily as I drowned them in milk. Today was my first day at Forks High School. Eating my cereal numbly, I realized that I wasn’t necessarily dreading the thought of the new school; I just wasn’t looking forward to it, either.

My gray eyes were trained on the adventures of the cocoa puffs dude on the back of the box when Bella made her appearance. “Morning,” I said sleepily, acknowledging her presence.

She nodded in my direction and took my cereal box, pouring herself a bowl noisily. I snatched it back childishly at the first chance I got, refocusing on the adventures of cocoa puffs dude. Bella laughed at me, setting me aback. The sound wasn’t at all menacing or cool, both of which I had expected from her. I glanced up at her, catching her eye for a moment. The look she sent me said it all.


Bella seemed just as unhappy with her decision as I was going to be, no doubt, but nonetheless I complied. We finished off our breakfasts in silence, a mutual air of forced civility radiating around us. Shuffling to the sink, I rinsed out my bowl.

“Edward will be here to take us to school in about fifteen minutes, so you might want to get dressed,” said Bella offhandedly.

Her tone was painfully forced. I replied back with identical pain, “Thanks for the warning.”

She nodded and I tore up the stairs to her room where my suitcases were stashed. My sister was still sleeping in her crib under the window, so I crept in as silently as I could muster, which was quite stealthy if I say so myself. I unzipped my bags and raked out some clothes for the day. A pair of black slacks and a blood red turtleneck were among the chosen, along with a long gray coat that stopped short of my knees by mere inches. Slinging the clothes over my arm, I grabbed two pairs of shoes and my makeup bag and dashed from the room.

Inside the safety of the house’s sole bathroom, I pulled on my clothes and brushed my black hair free of tangles. It was being quite unruly today, my bangs flipping out at an awkward angle. I brushed them a few more times to no avail, so I whipped out my flatiron from my bag and proceeded to make my hair look like a work of careful disarrayed art. It worked. I looked almost put together after I pulled on a corded necklace with bulky red and black glass beads and applied minimal makeup, just enough to lighten my sleep deprived eyes so that I didn’t look like I had a broken nose and to assure my lips remained unchapped. I grabbed the shoes from earlier and stashed the makeup bag, heading down stairs.

“That was quick,” Bella commented from her seat at the kitchen table.

I raised a brow at her, “Har, har. Flats or pointy heels?” I held up a pair of shoes in hand, one pointy, sleek, and stylish, the other comfy, slightly rhinestoned, and stylish. Bella stared at me like I had grown a second head.

“Why are you asking me?” she asked, incredulous.

I looked around the empty room as if I was looking for someone. “Who else would I ask?”

I earned a snort for my sarcasm. “And you’re forgetting my fashion sense is zip?”

I rolled my eyes, “Puh-lease, Bella. Would I really give you an option that wouldn’t look great? That was more of a personal preference question, silly goose.”

Bella laughed, “Oh. Well in that case, flats. They look less like an accident waiting to happen.”

“Pointy heels it is then,” I announced, shooting her a cheeky grin.

She shook her head, “Whatever you say.”

As I pulled on my shoes, I inwardly marveled at how easy it was to fall back into place as friends. I shook my head, hoping to make the day’s style of disarray look less intentional. I ducked up just as the crunch of a car on the gravelly driveway made its way to my ears.

“Edward’s here,” Bella said, springing up.

Like it wasn’t obvious.

I stood; my heels clicking as I all but sprinted up the stairs to retrieve my school bag and one of the notebooks I had brought with me. Creeping back into Bella’s room, I hunted through my suitcase a moment before dragging out a worn leather messenger bag. The sort with all sorts of straps and pockets and zippers, most of them for looks that you never used. I pushed a brand new composition notebook into the bag and hurried my way back down stairs, grabbing my purse from the living room as I sprinted out the door. I made a beeline for the shiny Volvo parked behind the ‘green’ rental.

I practically jumped in the back seat, closing the door swiftly behind me. In the passenger’s seat, Bella sat looking only slightly ticked. That was a step up from the livid I could have expected yesterday. Beside her Edward sat quietly, pulling out from the drive speedily.

“Morning, Edward,” I piped from my spot in the back, transferring my wallet from my purse to my bag. At least I hadn’t done that in the house, right?

“Good morning, Emme,” he said, perfectly polite. Such a gentleman, I thought with a snort.

He was officially in my good graces, though, by the time we got going down the road. Simply stated, he drove like a mad man. A complete and total maniac. It was amazing. It was fantastic. I pressed my face against the window, happily watching the endless green of Forks blur with our speed. Up front Bella and Edward seemed to be having a deep conversation. It would have been dreadful of me not to interrupt.

“Hey, Edward?” I asked, leaning between the seats and propping myself on the console.

He shifted away from me, thinking I wouldn’t notice. “Yes, Emme?”

“You’re really going insanely slow for this car,” I criticized with a pout. “Can’t you pick up the pace?”

“Oh God, Emme, don’t encourage him!” wailed Bella, pressing her face to her hands. But it was too late. Edward was staring at me like I had spoken Japanese to him.

“Did you really just say that I’m driving slowly?” he asked, slightly wide eyed.

I shot him a grin that was entirely too toothy. I really needed to cut back on that. “Why yes, yes I did.”

He returned his attention to the road, taking my words as his permission to really push the car’s limits, I suppose. I returned to staring out the window, pleased that the green was blurring even worse than before now. I couldn’t pick out a fleck of brown trunk anymore. I giggled. Bella made a distraught noise.

“Look what you’ve done, Emme!” she squealed. “Now he’ll never slow down!”

Edward chuckled beside her, taking his eyes off the road and turning them on my cousin with a look I had only seen a handful of times before. Once, when my father looked at my mother right after Lissy was born, before he knew she wasn’t his, and twice when my mother looked at my father after he forgave her for what she had done. I recognized it as a look of both pure love and total adoration.

Then I fought the urge to make a gagging noise. I wasn’t overly fond of googly eyes, especially if they weren’t being made at me. Luckily, I didn’t have to be overly grossed out for long. Lover boy seemed to sense my disapproval and put his eyes back in his head where they belonged and returned them to the road. Smart move there, Skip, I thought sarcastically. He snorted and tried to pass it off as a cough. I figured that I had missed some silly gesture from Bella they didn’t want me to know about.

Fine with me. I’m not that easily offended.

We slowed to the speed limit as we neared the school, parking near the main office. I climbed out from the back, slinging my messenger bag over my shoulder and abandoning my purse in the Volvo. Bella stalked off to her first class and Edward followed her, so assumed that they had their classes together. I took my eyes off their retreating backs, noticing for the first time all the pairs of beady little eyes trained on me as I took my first steps on Forks High School’s campus with gusto. I blinked back at a particularly nasty looking pair, one girl with shining corn silk hair and the other with wild curly brown hair. Both wore ugly expressions like they had just fallen over in horse shit.

I was fresh blood, I realized, a smirk forming on my lips. That must be a novelty here in Forks.

I stepped into the office and sauntered to the desk, determined to own this school as soon as possible. I knew it wouldn’t happen; I was an outsider and these kids’ frickin’ great grandparents were in diapers together. It would still be fun to try, though. Maybe it would work out a little better than when I tried the same thing at my old school in Gatlinburg. Of course, I had been a freshman then. A nothing. I was a sophomore now, though; I could drive and everything.

“Hi,” I said brightly to the middle aged woman behind the desk. “I’m Emme Fenway. I just transferred from out of state and need to pick up my schedule.”

“Emmette Fenway?” the woman asked, searching through a stack of paper work.

I winced a bit at my full name. “Yes, ma’am. That’s me.”

She smiled brightly, “Here you are, dear. Take this slip and have your teachers sign it, then bring it back here at the end of the day.”

I stooped a bit to read the name plate on her desk, “Thank you, Mrs. Cope.”

“Don’t mention it, sweetie. Have a great first day!”

I left the office with a tiny wave in Mrs. Cope’s direction, fuming as I went. I had explicitly told mother not to register me by my full name, but rather by just Emme. Had she listened? Of course not. Who ever listens to what Emme wants anymore? No one, that’s who. I glared at my schedule. I had first hour Science with Mrs. Andrews, building ten. I sighed, looking around hopefully for a trail of signs or something pointing me to building frickin’ ten. Today was already horrible. I hated high school.

“Need some help?” I whirled around to find a boy near my age smiling at me goofily. I blinked at him once or twice.

“Um, yeah, actually. Where the hell is building ten?” I asked bluntly.

He chuckled, “It’s just around the corner. I have Mrs. Andrews first hour, too. I’ll walk you?”

It wasn’t really a question, but a statement, so I followed him to the classroom. He was around two or three inches taller than me, even with my heels, and very dark for Forks. Dare I say it, he had a tan. His hair was long, blonde and curly, his eyes a strange shade of greenish blue. That was all splendid. The problem was his face. Dear God, bless him for his poor face. Acne was everywhere, his lips looked like they were perpetually busted, and he had no eyebrows. He had great, fuzzy caterpillars that had taken up residence on his brow.

“My name’s Hunter Crowley, by the way,” he said cheerily, smiling wide. His face was a little better when he smiled.

“I’m Emme Fenway,” I said politely, trying my best not to take out the morning’s frustration on him.

We turned the corner and building ten was in sight. “So when did you move here?” asked Hunter.

“Well, technically I haven’t moved in yet,” I said. “I’m living with my uncle and cousin until my mom gets the house situation settled.”

“Oh. Who’s your cousin?” he asked.

Persistent, wasn’t he? “Bella Swan,” I answered automatically.

“Really? Cool. My brother almost went to prom with her last year,” he said with a chuckle, like I was missing out on a good joke. I laughed along with him for lack of knowing anything better to do.

We entered the classroom and Hunter left me for his seat behind dark haired boy with glasses. I swept a look over the class briefly before approaching Mrs. Andrews with my slip. She seemed nice enough as she signed her name in bright purple ink, dead center of the slip. Mrs. Andrews was young, probably fresh out of collage, and obviously a bright eyed bushy tailed morning person. We wouldn’t get along, I could tell. I personally am a nocturnal creature, and I operate best between the hours of ten at night and two in the morning. Not the most convenient thing in the world, but I manage.

Mrs. Andrews directed me to a rickety desk in the far corner, apologizing for its state but explaining that it was the only empty one available. I didn’t mind, not really. I took my seat quietly, the only noise I made being my heels clicking as I walked. I was fully aware that every eye belonging to a student was on me as I swished my way across the classroom.

Like I said, fresh blood. That makes me a novelty, right?