The Cullens are the ruling class of the Volturi, strict and traditional. What happens when Edward is ordered to go and meet with a new coven of 'Vegetarian' vampires called the Swans? Will he find romance with the youngest, Bella? AU!
7. Edward tells The Truth
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I had to tell her. I owed that much to her at the very least.
I sighed openly as I approached the quaint little house by the forest. A house… most vampires we tracked down were transient. But still, it was lucky we knew her address, since Demetri’s talent did nothing because of Bella’s…unnatural and unusual aversion to such powers.
I took one deep, unnecessary breath before knocking on the front door, which her mother promptly opened.
“Good morning, Mrs. Swan,” I smiled, and she instantly gushed over my presence.
Oh, he’s so polite! I do hope Bella will be nice to him today… They’ve been getting along so well… Her thoughts had become flustered by the mere sight of me, and it took her a second before she could invite me in. I waited patiently until she had gotten her thoughts in order, then walked in when asked.
Human propriety would have called for her to ask if I would like anything to eat or drink, but instead she settled for asking me if I wanted to sit down.
I politely declined, saying, “Would be so kind as to call your daughter down from her bedroom though? I’m hoping she will oblige to join me on a walk this fine morning.” I had stepped into the sunlight coming in from the kitchen window during my proposal, and it had the desired effect on Renee.
“Of course I can call her down Edward, but you’ll have to ask her if she’ll come with you yourself.” She then proceeded to say, “Bella!” in the general direction of the stairs.
Bella’s probably happier not going to school today anyways, Renee thought as we waited for Bella, After all, she did say it was boring and trivial… We didn’t wait long for the aforementioned, and a look of momentary shock crossed her face when she entered the kitchen and saw me.
“Good morning Bella,” I acknowledged her with exactly the right amount of civility the situation called for. Then, remembering what her mother had just thought, I added jokingly, “Your mother and I were just discussing the wonders of living with humans. It sounds quite… fascinating.”
We never discussed that! Renee thought in surprise, but she kept quiet, unknowingly helping me with my little joke.
“Hmm, yes, fascinating…” Bella replied as she rolled her eyes in jest of my humor, but there was laughter in them.
Then she allowed herself to look at me, so I smiled back at her, but she wasn’t looking at my face quite yet. She was doing the same thorough appraisal of me as yesterday, and I found myself inwardly thrilled by it. I was now especially glad I had decided to bask my face in the sunlight.
I found myself looking her over as well, and like yesterday was not disappointed in her appearance. She should have been sparkling too, but to my dismay, no rays of light reached her beautiful figure. What lovely thoughts I was conjuring in my head, and in the presence of the main subject’s mother!
They’re doing it again! Renee’s strong thought broke my stare, but Bella remained unaffected.
I was about to address the Miss Swan, but Renee took the opportunity away from me. She cleared her throat loudly and Bella unwillingly looked up at the source of the interruption, only to find herself meeting her mother’s laughing golden eyes.
“Yes?” She asked with a clipping edge to her voice, making me feel oddly and slightly awkward, most likely due to the nature of my previous thoughts.
“Edward has a question for you dear,” Renee replied, wholly unabashed by her daughter’s tone. She nodded in my direction, obviously wanting me to address Bella myself.
I was hoping, Miss Swan, that you would join me on a walk through the nearby forest,” I smiled full on at her then, and I knew my teeth would sparkle along with my skin.
This time she caught my smile and returned it, replying, “I suppose I could…seeing as how I’m not going to school.” I could tell she was happy at the prospect of joining me, though she hid her excitement exceedingly well. I could see it in her eyes.
“Excellent!” Renee exclaimed, flushing slightly when Bella turned to stare – it was almost a glare - at her.
“Let’s just go,” she motioned towards the door and steered me forward through it.
“Your mother is very kind,” I commented once we had gotten through the door and out into the sun – kind was an understatement. “You’re very fortunate to have your birth parents make up the rest of your coven.”
“Yes, I suppose I was lucky in that regard,” she sympathized, though I could tell she hadn’t liked my wording. “So,” she changed the subject abruptly, “Where are we going?”
“Oh, nowhere in particular,” I smiled at her without turning my head, though I did turn my ruby orbs her way as well. I knew they would be glowing, as we were facing almost directly into the sun. To most people that looked intimidating, but when they were meant to be that there was no laughter in them, as there was now. I was attempting to be mysterious.
“Well can you tell me why you wanted to walk with me at least?” She sounded slightly annoyed at my lack of a normal response, so I decided to tell her solely fact.
“I… I wanted to tell you the truth, Isabella,” I hung my head low, staring at my feet; I didn’t know if telling her was a good thing. “After last night, I don’t think I can keep this a secret any longer.” I would have to tell her now.
Her eyes peered up at me in interest at the word ‘truth,’ and I supposed I deserved the sudden look. She clearly still didn’t trust me fully.
“You’ve been sent to get me,” she declared simply and shrugged indifferently, as if she had accepted it already.
“Yes,” I whispered. I didn’t like her acceptance of the fact, since I disliked the fact myself now. I reached for her hand and ran with her through the woods. I hoped none of my ‘acquaintances’ were around the house… In mere seconds I had gotten to the clearing I wanted. In it there was a decrepit house which was our makeshift ‘base’ while we were here. It fitted the style of around one hundred and fifty years ago nicely.
“What is this place?” Bella uttered, her voice dripping with admiration of her surroundings.
I decided to explain the history rather than what it served as right now. “I was bitten in 1352, Isabella. My great nephew thirty-five times over, Richard Masen, built this house, but left the area in 1932 due to the Great Depression. My ‘father’ Carlisle told me of this shortly after he decided to send for you,” I gestured to the door, and she visibly vacillated before hurrying up the stairs and into the house.
I made sure we were situated in the living room – the only room that hadn’t been taken over by us – and lit down in the middle of the dusty old floorboards. “So why did he send you to come get me?” Bella asked, obviously wanting the answer quite badly, as I was sure she was never this persistent in her questioning.
“Because,” I started, deciding to tell her half right now. I stared into her butterscotch eyes with my crimson ones, drawing nearer to her, my words barely audible. I knew she would catch them. “They want your power.”
I wanted to say the whole truth, but I was too embarrassed to say what I knew I had to in order to get the truth out. She could sense my indecision, and called me on it just as I looked away. She leaned in even closer to me and put her cold hand on my own, willing me to say it all. “There’s more, isn’t there?” Her eyes smoldered as she coaxed me, and I found her overall appearance nearly drawing me in, but I was not a human, and I was definitely not her prey.
I suppose I looked off kilter for a second, but I was too embarrassed to have to admit what I had to. I crossed my arms deliberately, breaking off the contact between us, and went to stand on the other side of the filthy room. “Yes, there is, unfortunately,” I could tell I was going to have trouble getting this out, though I had no idea why. The crown prince of Volterra, afraid of admitting a proposal to a female – albeit a stunning female at that. But still, I had trouble doing it. “They want you to… I mean, they want us to… Well, it would seem Carlisle believes it to be prudent if…” Yes, I most definitely was hoping at this point that she would take the hint, just to save me from this lack of coherency.
I wanted so desperately to hear her thoughts now, to make sure she had understood, but she filled in the blanks soon enough. “He wants us to marry,” she whispered sympathetically, and I loved her for taking this seriously.
I slid down the wall and to the floor in one fluid motion, remarking quietly, “You weren’t supposed to know.” I shouldn’t have told her; I knew it had been wrong too, yet I couldn’t just not have given her a reason for all of this.
“But I do, and its okay, I’m sure there’s an alternative,” Bella stood and approached me and made to sit adjacent to me along the wall, closer than before on the other wall.
I took advantage of our intimate proximity and nestled my head on her shoulder, actually relieved that I had told her. I was enjoying our closeness so much that when I had finally reflected on her words, I sat up straight and questioned, “Wait a minute, are you saying you don’t want to marry me?”
She was quite visibly shocked by my sudden exclamation, and she had total right to be. “Edward, I… I hardly know you!” she finally managed to word as close to proper as she wanted, “We’re completely different vampires, it would never, could never work!”
She honestly believed that; I knew it was most likely true, and that was devastating.
“It might,” I whispered, taking her hand again and stroking it with my thumb, trying to salvage our conversation.
That was apparently too much for her, and she looked awkward as she exclaimed, “I’m sorry Edward, I have to leave now, good day…” Then she was gone, flinging herself out the door and back home, sparkling the whole way.
I tried in vain to hear her thoughts as soon as she had fled, but my struggle was of no use. I knew I shouldn’t have told her; this was just denial talking, of course.
“Edward?” Emmett’s voice rang throughout the house and I knew I had just been beckoned to join him.
I got up slower than usual and followed his scent out towards the river, finding him on a cell phone, talking animatedly. He nodded in acknowledgement as I joined him.
“Yes, I love you too Rosalie, I’ll be home soon,” Emmett promised his wife, “Give the phone to Father now dear, yes I know, I love you, see you in a while… Carlisle! Finally… Yes, yes he’s right here… Yes I’ll hand it to him right now, hold on one second…” Then he passed the phone to me, and I supposed Father was expecting some sort of report – or worse, a departure date.
“Hello?” I asked tentatively, and was greeted by my father’s voice, highly stressed.
“Edward, how is it coming along?” By it, I knew he meant persuading Bella.
“Fine sir, almost complete actually,” I smiled grimly, though I knew he couldn’t see me. I was lying through my teeth at the moment; this was far from being complete.
“Then I expect you back no sooner than by the end of the week, and with the female please,” he sounded even more stressed now, and I was willing to bet that at least one of Aro, Marcus and Caius was listening.
“As you wish Father, of course,” I assured him, not wanting him more stressed than he already was. I was literally stunned by his apprehension as it was; he was usually cool and professional. I supposed those three were impatient for our return.
I bade him goodbye and snapped the phone shut, and then handed it back to Emmett. His eyes told me he knew I had been lying.
I needed more time; I needed to figure out how this could work. Bella was an amazing girl – no, woman – and at this point, I wanted to be with her no matter what the consequences. I wanted to kiss her so badly it pained me just to think about it.
But I was bound by duty to my city, and she was bound by love to her family. I wondered just how much each one of us would sacrifice.
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