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Finished. Six years after Breaking Dawn, a brutal murder is committed near Forks. When called in the middle of the night, Charlie Swan rushes off to do his civic duty and protect the public. Three hours later, he returns home with a new ward: the only survivor of the double homicide. From the beginning, it is clear that the poor thing needs a new start, a new life- and someone to save her from her old one, especially when ghosts from the past resurface. And, with Nessie determined to overcome her own demons, the two realize that friendship can come from the strangest places.

All of this belongs to Stephenie Meyer. Duh…

11. Chapter 11

Rating 5/5   Word Count 3878   Review this Chapter

Chapter Eleven––

Sue was watching Charlie because she did not think that Iris could handle the job all by herself. So Sue sent her and Seth to the grocery store instead while she watched Charlie. Iris, who had been dying of boredom, jumped at the chance to get out of the house.

“What does the list say?” Seth asked her.

Iris looked down at it and scrunched her nose. “Just the basics. Eggs, milk, chicken, that stuff.”

Seth nodded. “Figures. That’s all she ever buys. Nothing fun,”

“Really?” Iris asked, completely uninterested. She would rather have not gone to the store, but somebody had to do it. It would have been more fun if she was in a strange town with Seth. If nobody knew them then they could go at it full speed ahead. The fact that they were in tiny Forks where everyone knew everyone else’s business was a problem––but only a small one, mind you.

There was a faster way to do this, Iris was sure of it. All they had to do was split up and make it home in time. With any luck, Sue would be with Charlie at the doctor’s office––it was his last check-up––and they could have a little one-on-one time. Iris liked those few minutes each day filled with stolen kisses and sly glances. The thrill and the adrenaline that came from their clandestine affair was exhilarating. Just looking at Seth with Chief Swan in the room made her feel naughty; she loved it. Soon, she would get Seth on his back and not come up for a long time, that much was certain. It would be even better if she could do it with Chief Swan and Sue in the house.

That would be exciting.

“You get the ham,” Iris instructed, suddenly in the mood to hurry home. “I’ll get the peanut butter and the eggs. We’ll meet at the milk.”

“Okay,” Seth said. “Be careful,”

“it’s forty feet,” Iris snapped. “I’ll be fine,”

Seth grinned. “I know. I just worry,”

Iris flushed. “I don’t need you to,”

He glanced around for a moment. Sure that no one was watching, he pressed a chaste kiss against her lips. “But I still do,” he told her.

Iris tried to look cross, but only managed to look pleased with herself. “I can take care of myself,”

“Of course you can,” Seth said placatingly. “Now go get that peanut butter so we can go home and eat it.”

“Tasty,” Iris said as she walked off. She tried to swing her hips seductively, but only managed to give herself a limp. She was not a graceful woman, but a blunt, and straight forward seductress. Seth grinned as she walked slowly away, very appreciative of the person Iris was. True, she was not the busty blonde sex kitten that every boy and man fantasized about; she was something more real, tangible, human and flawed. And Seth found himself wanting to keep her pure and stainless. It was a very appealing thought indeed.

“Hey, Seth!” Alice said suddenly. She appeared suddenly, like an apparition, there one moment and gone the next. He had not seen her coming, nor had he smelled her––but that was not surprising. But nonetheless, he was glad to see her.

“Hey, Stranger.” he said as he wrapped an arm around her small shoulders. “What are you still doing here? I thought that you guys went back to Montana.”

“We were,” she shrugged. “but we had some visitors stop by. It would have been rude to pick up and leave; Esme doesn’t do rude.”

Seth’s gaze darkened. “I know,” he muttered.

“Kate took Garret back to Alaska.” Alice told him softly. “He really is sorry, you know.”

“I don’t care,” Seth snapped. He glared down at the tiny, spritely little girl. “He should have had more control.”

“She’s okay,” Alice reminded him. “Nothing happened to her.”

“Something could have,” Seth retorted.

“Don’t worry so much, Seth,” she warned him. “You’ll make things more complicated. Just relax. Don’t try to force anything to happen. You’re not going to imprint on her.”

Seth looked sharply at Alice. “I don’t need to imprint on Iris to care about her.” He snapped. He glowered at her, angry that she would even suggest such a thing. For just a moment, he lost focused. He glanced cautiously around. Iris was nowhere to be seen. “How do you know that I won’t imprint on her?”

“I can’t see imprints,” Alice confessed with a shrug. “Remember when you wanted to know if Emily’s baby was a boy?”

“You couldn’t see,” Seth remembered. “So you can see Iris?” he asked timidly.

Alice nodded. “Yes, I see red eyes and a broken body covered by a gray cloak.”

“What the hell?” Seth yelled, rightly outraged.

Alice looked sagely at his shocked pain. “Destiny’s hand is upon her. I’m almost excited to see what’s in store for her.”

“How could you say something so sadistic?” Seth furiously demanded. “how could yo condemn her to such a life”

“I could be wrong, “Alice shrugged. “But I rarely am,”

“You are this time,” Seth said firmly. “There is now way that Iris is going to join the Volturi.”

“Prove it,” she dared him.

“Prove what?” Nessie’s voice laughed. Seth turned to watch the hybrid saunter up. Her arms were akimbo, linking her to a scowling Iris and a blank face Nahuel.

“Your visitor?” Seth asked Alice as he took a step towards Iris. The girl gave him a welcomed smile that told him just how uncomfortable she was.

“Yes.” Alice whispered the next part; it was for his ears only. Everyone but Iris, but only Seth would understand it. “Destiny,”

The eggs that Seth had been taking from Iris fell to the floor. Their shattering was deafening. Goose bumps rose up on his arms as Seth looked crazily at the unperturbed Alice. He tried to form words, but the sound he made were like small whines caught in his chest. Seth would have kept staring at Alice if Iris had not laughed.

“Butterfingers much, Seth?” she grinned chastisingly. “I know now not to pick you for Thanksgiving football,”

She kneeled down and began to pick up the broken shells. He mechanically crouched down and began to help her clean up. “Yeah, he croaked out. “I’m horrible at football, anyway. You would not have wanted me on your team.”

“Don’t worry,” Nessie gaily––and obnoxiously––laughed. “Jake’s even worse.”

Iris flinched when she stuck her finger into the clear good. For a moment she wrinkled her nose adorably, before a maniacal smile spread across her face. “Then maybe I will pick you,” she cooed. “Boop,” she drawled out lightly when she tapped Seth’s nose with her icky finger.

He rewarded her with a weak laugh. That seemed to satisfy her for now.


“Ugh!” Iris grunted as her head hit the wall. She threw her arms around Seth’s neck to keep herself stable. Seth was rapidly eating her neck and shoulder blade, not that Iris was complaining. He was being much more aggressive and domineering. She was masochistic,; she liked a strong man. “Oh, Gah…” she groaned when he bit her. Her hands clenched around his head, scraping his scalp.

Something must have happened at the store to cause him to act like this. Thank you God; thank you Alice.

Seth’s hands were hard and calloused. They scraped her stomach as they ran up and down the smooth contours. He gripped her sides tightly, bruising her delicate flesh. Iris choked out a gasp as pulled her deliciously close. Iris forced him to kiss her mouth again, igniting her body in flames. She shoved her fingers into the hem of his jeans and rolled her knuckles in the dimples of his hips.

Now he groaned as he bit her lip. Seth gave it a harsh tug and Iris cried out from the delightful pain. Her back arched up so high that she rose up onto her tippy toes. Her fingers slid around to his back where she clawed at him. He hissed in pain––Seth was obviously not masochistic. Iris wrapped her leg around Seth’s waist and used the wall behind her to springboard up to his level.

Her legs tightly coiled around his waist. His heat was magnetizing, drawing her in. Her entire body was bruised and on fire. She pressed up against him, bringing heat to heat, and want to want. Her flesh sought his, desperate to touch her icy cold to his burning inferno. Her eyes snapped open. She could not see anything, not even color. She could not breath, nor could she think. And Iris most certainly did not care.

An intensity was coiling inside her, an intensity that she did not understand. It turned her blood to oil and the air in her lungs was scintillating sparks. Her head rolled side to side, and she moaned loudly. Never before had she felt such pleasure, or such want. It was numbingly intoxicating, drugging her. Her mind was sluggish, unable to process he overwhelming sensations bombarding her. Her body responded, thankfully, on its own.

“Seth,” she whispered.

“Iris,” he hissed back.

“Don’t stop,” she told him.

“Not until you scream my name,” he promised.

“Never,” she groaned “Ugh…” Seth grinned malevolently. “…submit,” She shoved her hands into his pants, grabbed him, and squeezed.

“Naugh…” Seth loudly groaned.

He released Iris all of a sudden. She fell to the floor, limp and confused. It took her brain a moment to register exactly what had happened. Iris looked with wide, beseeching eyes up at Seth. He glowered down back at her. “You are dangerous,” he told her.

Iris saucily grinned. Her head was still spinning, but she was fairly sure that she could talk. “You know you like it,” she teased him.

“Wait!” Iris cried when he turned his back on her. “Where are you going?”

“Home,” Seth answered nonchalantly. He did not stop walking until he was at the door. He glanced over his shoulder at the dark girl gaping wide-eyed at him. There was a twang in his heart––he knew this was wrong––but so was developing an to Iris when Alice said she was going to fall in love with Nahuel.

“Wait!” Iris yelled. But Seth did not stop; he walked out the door and slammed it behind him. Iris sat on the floor, unable to move or speak. Her sluggish mind could not process what had just happened. He had been all over her, turning her body into something more than a vessel; and he suddenly was gone.

She shimmied her way back up the wall, fuming mad. How dare he refuse her? Especially after he started their very wonderful hot and heavy session. She thought it was progressing rather nicely when he suddenly ended it. What the hell was his problem?

“Did you see that?” she hissed to her brother standing on the bottom of the stairs. “Did you see what he did?”

Micah glared at her. “I saw more than I would ever want to. I don’t need to tell you how old he is, do I?”

Iris rolled her eyes. “Oh don’t be such a prick,” she snapped. “We were just having a bit of fun,”

“He’s six years older than you!” Micah cried. “Legally, he could have raped you!”

“Oh like I wasn’t putting out!” Iris told him heatedly. She had to be careful. She heard people in the driveway. Sue and Chief Swan must have been getting back from La Push. They were supposed to be visiting Billy Black. Iris did not know who that was, but she hoped––surprisingly––that they had fun together being old. “Trust me,” she said as she folded her arms, “I was trying to get in his pants,”

“You got there,” her stupidly protectively older brother told her.

“And he got out,” she said. “Weren’t you watching?”

“I was,” Micah nodded. “And I was about to rip his arms off of him,”

“I don’t need you to look out for me all the time!” Iris hissed. “I am perfectly able to make my own decisions,”

“Obviously not,” he retorted. “It’s been two months and you’re already making stupid decisions. How many times have you been shot since I died?”

“Oh my God, it was only once!” Iris stomped her foot. “And that was two weeks ago!”

“And look how well you’ve heeled up!” Micah thundered.

Iris reflexively grabbed her shoulder. “This wasn’t their fault!”

“I never thought I would see the day when you defended outsiders!” Micah snarled. “How the mighty have fallen!”

“I have to turn to someone!” Iris hissed. Her eyes burned with a passionate fire as she stared her brother unwaveringly down. He did not balk under gaze, but returned it with the same heat. He was just as inflamed, as passionate, and as angry as she. Neither would ever back down or repent. They were far too stubborn. “Someone not dead!”

“You’ve never spoken fondly of that man in your life! Or is it that boy? Seth?”

Iris’s eyes flashed. “He isn’t a boy,”

“He’s older than me!” Micah snapped. “And that makes it pedophilia! Which is gross as hell!”

“It isn’t like that!” Iris cried indignantly.

“Yes it is!” Micah roared.

"You sit down with Sue," Nessie softly instructed as she led Chief Swan into the house. Her soft, cooing words interrupted the storming fight. Micah glared at Iris and disappeared up the stairs. Iris glared at her brother’s retreating form before turning to Nessie and the rest of them. Nessie gave the old man a benign smile as she helped him sit down. "You need your rest. Nahuel and I will take care of it,"

Oh yes, Nahuel. Iris rolled her eyes. He was another vampire thingy, this time from far south, like the tip of South America. They were multiplying like rats. Soon, all of Forks would succumb to the rampant vampire population, and Washington state was soon to follow. Before lunch time, it felt, the entire world would be overrun by them. It was infuriatingly familiar. Nessie was infatuated with the dark man and his bewitching eyes. He too seemed enraptured. He followed her everywhere, like a shadow, ready to pounce at the slightest hint of danger. The overprotectiveness was sweetly suffocating. It irked Iris to no end. If she had not known better, she would have assumed that Nessie was with Nahuel, not Jacob.

Chief Swan smiled at Nessie. “Need some help, kiddo?” He had obviously not been listening.

“Nah, Nahuel and I got it,” she sweetly smiled at the old man and batted her eyes. “But thanks, anyway.”

Chief Swan glared at the ebony skinned man’s back as he dutifully followed Nessie into the kitchen. He did not think anyone was good enough for his precious grand baby, not even Jake. She was too perfect and too precious for any man. It might have been better if Bella and Edward locked her up in a convent somewhere so she could study. Conversational French was an imperative character trait that she was sadly lacking.

“Oh Iris!” Nessie exclaimed. “I didn’t see you there!”

Iris flushed. She was still fuming from her argument with Micah, not that she could tell them that. “I was coming downstairs to get a glass of water,” she floundered clumsily for a cover. It was a weak one, but it would do.

“Well,” Nessie smiled. “You just sit down, too. We’re having a movie night tonight before Jake and I go back to college. You are going to love it. It’s all four Alien movies.”

Iris nodded her head. She did not want to, but the words escaped her mouth. “Sounds like fun,”

Nessie positively glowed. “I’m so glad you think so!” she squealed delightedly. “It will be the best time! I am absolutely sure of it!”

“I’ve not seen any of those movies,” Iris muttered.

“Neither has Nahuel,” Nessie grinned. “It will be fun for both of you. I promise they’re not scary.”

Iris scoffed. “Anything made in the seventies can’t be scary,”

“Predator was pretty good,” Chief Swan said from the sofa.

“That was made in the eighties,” Sue chimed in. “Close, but not close enough.”

“Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.” Both Chief Swan and Sue began to laugh at their own wit. Nessie and Iris shared a look. Old people. Iris tried to sit down as Nessie and Nahuel finished their trek into the kitchen, but her skinny legs gave out before her butt reached the floor. She grunted on impact, and immediately had Chief Swan’s full attention. “You okay, Iris?” he asked.

“Yeah,” she breathed out slowly. “I’m fine. Just sore.”

“Is it your shoulder?” Sue kindly demanded. She had not yet learned that Iris did not respond well to the demands of adults. The childish part of her rebelled, hated authority and anyone who claimed it—Dr. Cullen included.

Iris shook her head. “It’s healing up just fine.”

By chance, she glanced up at the stairs. Her eyes narrowed a her door swung silently open. Victoria stepped out. Her creepy eyes glared malignantly at the world, and her mouth crept into a terrifying snarl when she spotted Nessie walk into the kitchen. She muttered something foul, but Iris could not hear it. Her heart stopped. What was the ghost planning?

“That’s good,” Chief Swan grinned uncomfortably. “I’m glad your feeling better.”

“Uh-huh,” Iris grunted. Her eyes stayed locked on Victoria as she stood at the landing. She surveyed the room, looking for something. Iris had no idea what she was p to, but it obvoiusly was not good. Micah stepped out of Iris’s room. However, he did not use the door. He glared and Victoria and called out to her, but Iris did not hear what he said. Victoria, did, however. She whipped her head around and spat at Micah. Iris’s fists clenched, angry at anyone dare insult her beloved brother.

“Sue and I were talking,” Chief Swan hesitantly began. His well trained eyes watched Iris carefully, looking for any sign of disturbance or fear. He did not want her to be scared while under his protection. He had grown…fond of the girl, and wanted her to stay safe and content. He could not bring himself to think of her fearing him, or any of his decisions. Karin may not have been the best mother, but he was not going to behave the same way he had with Bella. Iris did not know; Iris would never know. “We think that it is time to re-enroll you in school. You’ve already missed several days, and we don’t want you to have to repeat a year.”

Iris screamed.

“That’s a bit over dramatic,” Sue huffed.

But Iris was not paying attention to her or to Chief Swan. Her attention was focused solely on Victoria and Micah. Her heart beat fast. Victoria had moved to go down the stairs, and Micah grabbed her wrist, jerking her backwards. The redhead growled ferociously—silently. In the blink of an eye, she flipped Micah’s wrist and threw him down the stairs. That’s when Iris screamed.

Sue and Chief Swan jumped up. Though blind, they heard the loud thumps and thuds, saw the wall shake when Micah hit it. A picture fell from the wall, and shattered on the ground. It was Nessie as a small girl with Bella. Nessie and Nahuel appeared from within the kitchen. “What was that?” she cried in alarm. Her pale gold eyes searched for an intruder, for danger, something that she could fight. She would never see it.

Victoria’s outraged scream of triumph was suddenly very audible to Iris. Maybe it was because her heart beat no longer drowned out the rest of the world. Hair blowing wildly in an intangible wind, she bound down the stairs and over Micah. “You!”

“Nessie!” Iris screamed. “Move!”

Victoria missed Nessie with her initial charge, but did a quick hairpin turn to attack again. Iris threw her shoulder into Victoria’s gut, stopping the freak’s assault. “She wants you!” Iris yelled. “Go!”

“I can’t see anything!” Nessie cried.

“I can!” Iris yelled. Victoria grabbed her stomach and lifted her high over her head. She threw Iris gently off of her. The fall still hurt. Iris gasped in pain. For a moment, the air left her body, and her sight turned black. "Trust me," she managed to croak out.

Micah was on his feet now. "What do you think you're doing?" he snarled at Iris. He ducked Victoria's lopsided kick and punched her in the nose. She reeled back, clutching her face and swearing. Micah turned his attention to his baby sister. Lifting her off of the floor, he pushed her to the front door. "Get out of here,"

"You need help," Iris snapped before grabbing a book and hurling it at Victoria's head. "My help."

"I'll manage," Micah snapped.

"I'm the only other person who can see her,” Iris cried when Victoria bit her brother’s arm.

“Then get out to fight another day!” Micah yelled.

“I’m not leaving you!” Iris cried.

“I’m dead, Iris! She can’t do anything to me! You need to run!”

“IRIS!” Nessie screamed.

Victoria turned.

Her eyes flashed with evil intent.

She lunged.

Iris screamed. “MOVE!”

She managed to knock Victoria out of the way with her body’s velocity. The two of them hit the floor with a loud thump. Immediately, Nahuel was helping Iris up and standing on Victoria. The redhead started to snarl and swipe at Nahuel’s leg. Iris screamed at him to not move, but he did not need her direction. He could feel Victoria now; he knew where she was.

“Can she follow us out of the house?” he asked.

Iris shook her head. “Yes,” she whispered. “But only for so far,”

Nahuel nodded. “Very well. Take Nessie and run. I’ll follow in a minute.”

“You can’t see her,” Iris hissed as she backed up from Nahuel.

“I can feel her,” he told her firmly. “That’s all I need,”

Iris nodded. “Hurry,”

When she grabbed Nessie, Iris ran for all she could. Chief Swan and Sue were honking the horn, yelling at the girls to get in. As they sped off, Iris heard something break in half. Then there was a horrible, ear-splitting scream and the sound of something ripping.