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The More things Change

Summary:
The Cullen family undergoes many changes--some people leave, some people arrive. Marriages, babies, and imprints confuse the issue even more.


Notes:
This is a sequel to "Home"...you don't have to read that to totally understand this, but it would probably help alot! Yeah, I know I sound like I'm begging for reads, but I'm just trying to be helpful! So go read "Home" if you get confused...


18. Chapter 18: Another Vision...A Dark One

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1203   Review this Chapter

Alice’s POV:

There really isn’t much to say regarding the birth of Bella’s baby girl. Her name is Renesme. Poor Jacob imprinted on her right after she was born, and it’s been hard to get him to leave ever since! That, coupled with the fact that Seth would barely leave Maria (much to her extreme annoyance), Carlisle was getting a little nervous. The patrols were getting lighter. Sean would go out and spot Leah from time to time—since he could pop in and out up to a half mile, and that he didn’t smell like a vampire, he was a big help filling in the gap left by the boy wolves. Leah was getting tired, but Jacob and Seth were not exactly thinking totally clearly at this point. Maria also ran a couple of patrols. But since Seth followed her out, I think she was concentrating more on escaping him than actually watching for danger.

Edward started Bella’s change right after Renesme was born. As much as he hated to change her, he hated the thought of losing her even more. Surprisingly, her change seemed to be not nearly as painful as others we had all witnessed. Sean was shocked when Carlisle told him that the Change takes three days. His jaw dropped.

“Three days?!?” He replied incredulously. “Three days? Good grief! For our kind, the transformation only takes ten or fifteen minutes…twenty tops! And it has four distinct stages! True, it doesn’t always…take hold—sometimes the person dies and stays dead. But three days? That’s insane!” He shook his head. Carlisle, Esme, and I exchanged our own incredulous glances, and then it was Carlisle’s turn to be shocked.

“Only as long as twenty minutes?? That—that’s unheard of! Absolutely unheard of! Why, how can the change take hold in so short of a time span?”

Sean shrugged. “Beat’s me,” he replied. “I’m neither a doctor nor a crypto-zoologist, so I have no clue. All I know is, I couldn’t have handled it if I had put Maria through 3 days of hell. I felt bad enough for the 10 minutes it took her as it is!” He shook his head again, and walked out onto the porch.

And so the days passed. Renesme grew incredibly fast, and was talking by the time she was 7 days old! We were all totally shocked, to say the least. Sean said that he had grown normally until he reached his mid-twenties or so before he stopped aging. Carlisle and he had another one of their “thinking Discussions”, as Emmett called them, but yet again couldn’t come up with anything, other than the difference in vampire species again, which seemed to be the catch-all for whenever things didn’t add up.

Bella came out of her transformation none the worse for wear. She was very angry at poor Jacob for imprinting on Renesme, but eventually got over it. I thought she and Edward were excessively hard on Jacob over the whole thing. I mean really, the poor boy didn’t have any control over it, after all. Sean came rapidly to Jacob’s defense, and he and Edward nearly got into a fight over it, but Bella and I interceded before it came to that. I worried a little over the fact that there still seemed to be such deep animosity between Edward and Sean. I could see one or the other of them leaving eventually because of it, and I couldn’t bear for that to happen…if Edward left, Bella, Renesme, and Jacob would go with him. If Sean left, Maria and Seth would go with him. And I would, too. But the thought of either kind of split in my family was almost more than I could bear.

I talked it over with Carlisle one night while most of the others were out hunting, and we had the house to ourselves. Bella and Edward were at their house with Renesme. Esme was outside talking to Sean and MAria. Carlisle said he’d noticed the tension between Edward and Sean also. “I really think it’s because they’re so much alike,” he said, “although I’m quite certain they would both deny that they were. But if you get right down to it and observe their personalities, they are very similar. Certainly there are differences—Edward was much faster to commit himself to Bella than Sean has been towards you, for instance. But Sean and I have talked several times since he’s been here, and trust me, Alice--you should never doubt that the depth of Sean’s feelings for you is any less than Edward’s is for Bella.”

That made me smile. And then I frowned again. “But why can’t he just come out and say it?” I said, then immediately felt guilty again. “I shouldn’t have said that, Carlisle. I honestly don’t mean to sound whiny. I love Sean so much, and I know that he loves me, but it’s just hard to see everyone else happy, and yet not be happy myself.”

Carlsile smiled. “Well, I’m sorry, Alice,” he said. “Not everyone gets the perfect storybook-fairytale romance that Edward and Bella got. You and Sean don’t really have to worry about ever having children, for instance…well, aside from Maria, of course. And you also won’t have to worry about grandchildren either, if she ever gets over her aversion to Seth, that is, because Maria is a vampire, too.” Then he frowned again. “Which leads me back to the whole issue of why Seth imprinted on her in the first place. It just doesn’t make any sense. I mean, even Jacob can’t seem to explain why…”

Carlisle kept talking, but his voice receded into the distance. With a small intake of breath, the vision washed over me…darkness…faces, all around me faces…I knew some—friends of us, of Carlisle…others…wolves…the Volturi—ALL of the Volturi! In the meadow…death…Renesme…immortal child…no! Not immortal child! Jasper, Robyn and I had another like her…a boy…find him! Have to find him!! Sean…Sean—NO!!!

Suddenly, I inhaled sharply, and found I was on the floor with Carlisle frantically calling my name. “Alice! Snap out of it! What did you see! Are you alright? ALICE!!” He was shaking me now, worry plainly evident on his face.

“Carlisle,” I said weakly. I looked at him blankly a moment, trying to remember…then my eyes widened in panic, and I grabbed his shoulders. “Carlisle! You have to help me! Sean…he—he’s going to—“ I choked, and buried my face against Carlisle’s shirt.

“Alice Look at me!” He said in a commanding voice, again taking me by the shoulders, albeit much more gently this time. I slowly pulled back from him and looked up at his face. He was still worried, but much calmer. “What about Sean?” Carlisle asked. “What’s he going to do?”

I couldn’t answer right away. My throat felt closed up, and my eyes ached for tears that would never come. Finally, I answered him in a whisper, a whisper that held every fear I’d ever felt or even imagined…worse than when I thought Edward was going to kill himself…worse than when I had seen the first vision of Robyn, and worse than when Jasper had brought her home that first night…worse than anything…..

“Sean’s going to die!”