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NM Alternate Ending

Summary:
It's page 449 of the hard-back version of New Moon. Bella is running across the plaza in Italy. She has to get to Edward before the clock chimes. Before the Volturi do. His life depends on it. This time Bella stumbles and doesn't get there in time. What will happen to Edward now? Will Alice make it out of Volterra and keep her promise to Jasper? Will Bella be able to survive, thinking she's failed... alone in Volterra?


Notes:
So, you remember of course, in New Moon, Bella is running for her (and his) life toward the place where Alice saw Edward would be. It’s a race against time and she’s fighting the crowd…


15. Chapter 15

Rating 0/5   Word Count 1564   Review this Chapter

Aro was bored, that much was clear. He was finished with me. He closed the door in Edward’s face in the middle of his last plea for my life.

I didn’t know why Edward was begging so hard for me to get to live. Maybe it was so that he wouldn’t have to carry the guilt he would feel. The burden of responsibility.

Demetri wasn’t letting go of my good arm. He was gripping it tightly as he lead me quickly down the stone hallway. The others had all left. The three of us were alone. The heavy door settled into place with ringing finality and Edward rested his head against it in defeat. I was pulling against Demetri, twisting around to watch Edward. Our time together was quickly diminishing, I didn’t want to take my eyes off of him for even a moment. Demetri paused and also turned. He didn’t speak, but Edward’s back stiffened and he hurried to catch up with us. I saw him meet Demetri’s eyes briefly and then step in between us. I was surprised when Demetri allowed him to take his place at my shoulder. Edward gently held my shoulder with his left hand, and wrapped his right arm around my waist to support most of my weight. I leaned my face into him and breathed in his scent. I wondered how much time we had left.

Demetri continued down the dark hallway and Edward guided me along slowly in his path. I couldn’t guess where he was leading us. I didn’t want to think about it.

There was a maze of hallways and staircases. No one was around, my footsteps echoing down the deserted hallways made the only sounds.

I didn’t pay attention to our direction. I rarely looked up from where my face was buried against Edward’s cold chest, but I was aware that we were moving downward. I closed my eyes and fought back the tears that wanted to escape.

We stopped in front of yet another heavy door. Demetri pushed it opened and I was surprised when a fresh gust of wind hit me in the face. I looked up and realized we were headed outside, into the night.

“Where is he taking me?” I whispered. I had pictured him leading me to the dungeons, or some private chamber. I didn’t expect to leave the castle walls.

Edward used the hand that was resting on my shoulder to place his cool forefinger against my lips. Our eyes met and he simply shook his head.

Demetri paused and looked around. So did I.

We seemed to have left through a back door that led us directly into an alley. It was deserted, just like the halls had been.

Demetri put his hand on my back, above Edward’s arm and pushed us to the right. It jarred me and sent shooting pains up my broken arm. I let out an involuntary gasp.

Edward looked at me with concern and tightened his hold on me. His left hand rubbed my shoulder soothingly, but he didn’t speak.

I was beginning to realize that something strange was happening. I didn’t understand why Demetri was acting so sneaky, or why Edward seemed to be cooperating with him. Did he want me to die?

No, I was sure that he didn’t.

The alley we were in suddenly ended and forked into another. To the right I could see the square. Lamp posts were burning, but it was even more deserted now than it had been early this morning when I crossed it on my way to the clock-tower. Was this really the same day? It seemed like such a life-time ago.

Demetri guided us left, away from the lights and deeper into the darkness. This was beginning to look like a quiet enough place for a vampire attack.

My mind was so tired from the stress of the day. I was tired of wondering which were going to be my last moments. I was tired of hurting, feeling the pain of have Edward so near and yet not having Edward at all. I was exhausted. I just wanted this nightmare to be over.

Edward must have felt my will dissolve. He tightened his grip on me and kept looking anxiously into my face. I returned his gaze. I didn’t know why I was trying to memorize every line and angle of his face. I seemed like a wasted effort with my death looming so near to try to capture his scent and how it felt to lean against his chest, but I did it anyway. I couldn’t help myself, and soon it wouldn’t matter.

Demetri stopped suddenly and whipped around to face us. For a terrifying moment I thought this was it. He was ready to attack me. I held Edward tightly and stifled a scream.

But he was looking past us, back the way we had just came. He was squinting into the darkness and after a moment his tense expression broke into a smile.

I didn’t follow his gaze, but kept my own on Edward’s face. He was watching Demetri with alarm.

My nerves that were already on the breaking point, took another hit when a familiar sweet voice broke the dark silence.

“Demetri, my friend.” Jane coed. “Where do you think you are taking her?”

“Are you following me Jane?” Demetri replied lightly, “Are you hoping that I’ll share?”

Jane’s voice was right behind us now. The back of my neck tingled, and shivers ran up and down my spine. I was sure Edward could feel me trembling. He held me even more protectively.

“No, of course I don’t expect you to share. I’ve had singers of my own before. I would have killed the creature who thought they could have a taste of my prize.” She moved around us and stood next to Demetri, surveying us.

“I do feel sorry for you Edward.” She said after a moment of watching him try to calm me.

He glared at her, but didn’t reply. I was glad. Even I could see that she was taunting him.

“All you had to do was bite her.” Jane continued. “All you had to do was make it possible to be with her forever. Wouldn’t that have saved you both so much trouble?” She paused and came a little closer. Edward let out a low growl, but didn’t move.

“How much you must hate him Bella.” I could feel her eyes on me now, but I didn’t unbury my face from Edward’s shoulder.

“I would hate him.” Through her voice I could hear her smiling. Edward’s breathing began to hitch and I could tell me was trying to control his temper. I hoped he would ignore her, I didn’t want him to provoke her into hurting him. That was probably what she wanted.

“Is there something you needed Jane?” Demetri spoke next. “Because I’m a little impatient for my snack.”

“I was just curious as to where you were going.” Jane replied.

“Somewhere private.” Demetri responded in a low voice, “Somewhere where I can… play with my food.”

Jane’s sweet laugh made me sick to my stomach. “Oh, you’re one of those.”

She moved out of sight behind us, back the way she had come. “Then I won’t keep you.” Her voice was farther away when she added. “Enjoy yourself!”

Edward’s grip on me shouldn’t have relaxed simply from Jane’s exit, but it did. I became even more confused.

Now Demetri led us along even faster. My shaking legs and weak knees did not make for fast progress, so Edward scooped me up. He was so gentle that it barley hurt my arm. I closed my eyes and memorized what it felt like to be there, in his arms.

We made several more turns, but I didn’t pay attention. I found myself thankful that Demetri wanted to kill me somewhere other than the castle. I knew it was a strange thing to be thankful for, but it gave us more time together.

“Here.” Demetri’s voice cut through the silence and we stopped. I looked around and recognized where we were. My breathing came in gasps and, in my panic, I forgot about my broken arm. I pushed uselessly away from Edward in an attempt to get back on my own feet. Everything I had endured had been in vain, the tracker had found him after all.

We were standing in front of the butcher shop beneath Lazzaro’s apartment.

I twisted and thrashed against Edward’s grasp, ignoring the pain of my screaming arm. “No!” I rasped, “No Edward, he can’t be here. He can’t know!”

“Shhh,” Edward wasn’t letting me go, he wasn’t understanding. He was only trying to comfort me. “It’s alright Bella, everything is alright.” I was shocked when he spoke to Demetri next. “We have to get her inside.”

“No!” My voice was fading from all of the screaming I had done through my torture. I couldn’t scream for help, or warn Lazzaro about what was coming. I could only rasp uselessly into the night.

“No, Edward, we can’t!” But it was too late.

Demetri was pushing open the door, and then we were on the staircase. When we reached the top, Demetri gently tapped on the door.

Edward was holding me tightly, concerned when I suddenly stopped fighting. I let the tears of defeat stream down my face as we waited for an innocent, unsuspecting man to come answer his door.

I heard the latch click and I sobbed for him.

When Emmett opened the door, I could have died from shock.