What would have happened had the Volturi decided to grant Edward his wish and kill him? Would Bella have been able to get to him in time? Would the Volturi show mercy on them still? Bella races to save Edward's life, though one thing has changed...Edward will be killed.
5. Chapter 5: Torment
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As I was coming to, I strained to move, bringing my hand up to my head, feeling the blood and jerked it away in shock. “Oh, God…” I mumbled, weakly, looking around deliriously, struggling to remembering what had happened. All I remembered was Alice coming back and telling me that Edward had gone to the Volturi.
Oh, my God. Edward.
“Edward…” my voice cracked, as I cried out his name, the pain of doing so killing me. “Edward!”
I sat up and jerked around to see him practically unconscious again, still chained to the wall.
“Bella…” he mumbled, weakly, “Run.”
“What?” I said, barely finding in me the strength to crawl over to him.
I made to touch him, but he flinched away, with a growl. “Get…the hell out of here…now.”
“No!” I said, forcing myself to sound firm, despite my agony, “I’m not going anywhere without you.”
“Don’t…” he shook his head, “…please don’t.”
“Don’t what?” I asked, growing frustrated.
“Don’t…save me. Let me die. Please, Bella. I’m begging you. Let me die. I deserve to die. I deserve to die. I deserve to die.”
“NO! Stop it!” I shook my head, fiercely, stifling sobs, “I am not losing you again. I am going to get you out of here alive if it kills me.”
He growled at those words in protest as Jane’s voice said, from behind me, “Aw, now that…is true dedication right there.”
I whipped around to see Jane and Demetri followed by the three original Volturi members. Oh, God. This was it. We were going to die.
Instinctively, I buried my face in Edward’s shoulder, surprised when he rested his forehead against the top of my head. I began trembling as he did so, taking in the wonderful sensation.
Though I knew he would leave me again, I didn’t care. I would enjoy this while it lasted. It felt so amazing to have the mere feeling that a part of him still cared for me…even if it wasn’t true…my last moments would be spent with him. Right now, I could ask for no more than to have him by my side, pretending to love me, pretending to care.
I lightly skimmed my nose across his bare shoulder over to his neck and down his chest, resting the side of my head against his pecs, memorizing all that I could about him while I could.
He exhaled shakily and began breathing raggedly into my hair, stiffening up as he did so. I looked up at him to see his eyes the blackest shade of onyx--blacker than I had ever seen.
I couldn’t help but gasp slightly as I traced the circles beneath his eyes with my thumbs. Had he fed at all since he left me? That was why he was so weak. And, I wasn’t helping him at all.
I immediately pulled back and shook my head, “What happened to you?”
He simply stared at me, before saying softly, “You happened to me.”
I hung my head and tears streamed down my face. I buried my face in his chest and sobbed relentlessly before pulling back, taking his face in my hands, and sobbing, “Do you think it will hurt?”
He furrowed his eyebrows and looked over to the Volturi. “Bella…no.” He shook his head, “You can’t do this.”
“Watch me.” I said, firmly, stepping back, revelling in the fact that he couldn’t stop me from doing what had to be done.
“So…I take it this is the infamous Isabella Swan.” I turned around to see one of the Volturi members approaching me, with an evil smirk. He looked me up and down, circling me all the while, “I don’t see it.”
He looked to Edward, before saying, nodding to me in acknowledgment, “You actually love this girl?”
Edward struggled against his restraints and I made to help him when the member circling me grabbed my wrists, restraining me, and pulled me closer to him.
“Ah, ah, ah--let’s not be rash now, child.” He released me, pushing me onto the ground, “You’ll get your turn as well. Plenty of death for everyone.”
“Now, now, Caius,” another member addressed him, “You got your way in this; the least you can do is allow me my opinion in this.”
Caius sighed, irritably, “No one cares about your opinion, Aro. Stop delaying--the boy should’ve been dead by now. And…we got a little snack as a reward.” He knelt down beside me and wiped the blood off my head, licking it off his fingers.
Edward growled as loud as he could with how weak he was and struggled even further against his restraints.
I cringed away from Caius and said, “Please…let him go. You can kill me if you want…just…don’t hurt him. Let him go.”
“Damn it, Bella, shut up!” Edward said, angrily, but I merely ignored him.
“I don’t care what you do to me.”
Caius looked impressed, rising to his feet, turning to Aro and who I could only assume to be Marcus. “Did she just offer to sacrifice herself for him? Am I hearing this right?”
“Yes, Caius,” Marcus said, in a bored voice, “We were all here; we heard it.”
“Remarkable!” Aro said, happiness lighting his features, “Such loyalty. You two would never die for me.”
Caius rolled his eyes, “No, but we will die from you; now will you stop it? I cannot concentrate--be…quiet.” He turned back to me and knelt down again.
I unconsciously backed into the wall, pulling my knees up to my chest, cringing away from him. My breathing was ragged and my heartbeat sped up in anticipation.
“Caius, you’re scaring the child, come now.” Aro said, approaching us, “Intimidation is not the answer in this case. She has already proven herself courageous and brave beyond any human’s understanding.” He moved Caius aside and took his place.
I whimpered slightly, “No…”
“Don’t be afraid.” Aro said, softly, bending down to be on level with me, and for some reason, I trusted him. I looked at him, struggling to do so, not used to the crimson red of his eyes. He smiled slightly, “You must really love him to come after him like this.”
More than anything. More than words could express. How could I show them just how much I loved him? I was already going to die for him, but…that mere gesture was no where near enough to show my love for him. It would never accurately describe my love for him.
“Yeah, she’s stupid that way.” Edward mumbled, glaring at me.
“Not stupid.” Aro shook his head, “No…definitely not stupid.”
“What the hell do you know?” Edward snapped, “You don’t give a damn about us. We’re just another trophy for your showcase of power.” He shook his head, “You know nothing about love…you can’t know.”
He hung his head and Aro stood, before approaching him, “Maybe not.” He said, softly, “But, I have been alive longer than you. I know enough to know exactly how people in love will act. And, every word you have spoken, every act you have done…it is to be expected. Humanity is so predictable.”
“I’m not human,” Edward reminded him bitterly.
“That might be true…but, you allow yourself to be ruled by your humanity. You do all you can to remain as human as possible. That is enough. You love this woman, do you not?”
Edward simply glared at him and I yelled, “STOP!” I didn’t want to hear the answer; it would kill me. I already knew he didn’t love me; I couldn’t hear him say the words--no way I would survive it.
“Please…just…let him go. Don’t do this.” I shook my head, praying for death. My pain was so intense that I could feel myself dying anyway.
Caius came and jerked me up, forcing me to look at him. “Why do you want us to let him go so bad?” I didn’t answer him so he shook me roughly, “Answer me, girl.”
“Let her go!” Edward yelled, “Stop it!”
“Why don’t you want him to suffer for what he did to you?” Caius repeated, ignoring Edward, “He destroyed you. Why don’t you want to hurt him?”
“I can’t--” I choked out, weakly.
“Maybe you can’t.” Caius taunted, “But, we can. Now is your chance to get back those seven months. Revenge is sweet, my dear--bask in it every so often. Jane.”
“NO!” I yelled, as Jane approached Edward, who was breathing heavily in anticipation, his chest heaving with each forced breath. But, it was too late.
Edward’s screams of agony filled the room, echoing off the walls, engulfing me, ingraining itself within me.
“NO! Stop it! Please, please, please, stop!” I sobbed, pushing past Caius, to go to Edward, putting myself in front of him. Edward was trembling and sobbing tearless cries of pain, begging for it to stop. “Edward, Edward, it’s okay. It’s going to be okay.”
“I wouldn’t make promises I can’t keep if I were you.” Caius threatened, “In fact, quite the contrary…nothing will ever be okay again.”
Edward bared his teeth, growling angrily, “Don’t you dare threaten her!”
“Edward, please be quite.” I said, knowing that one word and they could kill him right now. I flinched at the thought and stepped closer to him instinctively.
Caius came over to me, “You never answered my question…why are you so adamant about keeping him safe? He nearly killed you…in more ways than one…” he chuckled once and Edward flinched, “…and your priority is still his safety over yours? I don’t get it.”
“I love him.” I sobbed, hating myself for saying so.
I forced myself to look at him, horrified to see him closing his eyes and hanging his head. I didn’t want to say it, because it was inevitable…he would never love me the way I loved him…but, he had to know. They had to know. It not only saved his life, but at least when I died, he would know that I never stopped loving him. He would know that it was all for him. Everything I did would always be for him. I knew nothing else but him.
“Promise me,” I said, looking at Caius, pleadingly, “Promise me that you will let him go.”
He straightened up, glaring at me, intimidation and power clear in his eyes, as he said, without remorse, “Sorry, Bella…we can’t do that.” He looked to Jane, who grabbed me from behind by my throat.
“NO!” I yelled, as Edward began struggling uselessly against his chains again. I couldn’t breathe…I struggled against Jane’s hold on me, desperate to save Edward, but I failed inevitably.
Jane flaunted me in front of Edward, revelling in his pain, desperate to make him suffer, as Demetri ran over and held Edward still, locking his head in place so that he was forced to watch me suffer.
Jane roughly pushed my head into a river of boiling blood. I screamed, allowing the blood to flow into me--searing my flesh, scalding me, as she completely submerged me into it.
She pulled me back up for a second so that I could see Edward’s pain. I was coughing, spitting out all that I could, struggling to breathe, forcing myself to not taste it, ignoring the inevitable queasiness and pain it caused me.
She dunked me again, this time digging her nails into the side of my neck, cutting off what little air supply I had left, smacking my head against the cement at the bottom of the river.
Oh, sweet death! Despite the fear that filled me, the pain of my flesh literally being burned off, and the utter disgust I felt towards the blood…none of it mattered. I was dying for the most just cause.
As the blood filled my lungs, I could no longer breathe…my heart involuntarily sped up…racing to keep me alive. I should have struggled against Jane, tried to save my life. Wasn’t it common sense to fight for my life? Survival of the fittest.
No. No…my life meant nothing. I would die and Edward would live. There were no other options; there was no other way. And, I wouldn’t have it any other way. If anyone would die here today, it was me. It only made sense.
I took in as much of the blood as I could--the feel of it scalding my flesh, burning it away, entering into my organs themselves, searing me like the fire of a million suns. Despite my aversion, though, I was eager for it all to be over. Desperate for death.
All the pain I felt was eased and seemed almost nonexistent. Oh, it existed. My whole being ached with the knowledge that I would never be enough for Edward…it hurt to know that he would never love me.
I felt my pain diminish more and more as my life was slowly, painfully leaving me…but still...never in my life had I felt so good…so at peace…knowing the precious life that I was saving. Aside from falling in love with him, this was the best decision I had ever made. I no longer felt pain, but love.
I only felt my love for him and joy for his survival build within me until it was so overwhelming that that was why I was dying. I was dying from the strength and power of my love for such an angelic creature.
It did not matter what pain he put me through…none of it mattered now…he would live and I loved him…that was all I needed to know…that was all I needed before dying. I had fulfilled my purpose and had no reason to continue living anymore.
I fell limp, barely conscious, as I was ripped out of the river roughly and dragged effortlessly, cruelly over to Edward, who was screaming my name in anger and pain.
“NO! Damn it, not Bella. Why not me?” He was trembling in anger, struggling against Demetri, who tightened his hold on him.
Jane used her pinkie nail to slice through my carotid artery, rupturing it severely, smirking cruelly as she looked to Edward, putting me right beside him, forcing him to have to see and smell the blood.
“NO!” I yelled, “NO, STOP IT! Stop it, stop it now! NO, LET GO OF ME!” I struggled against her, trying to back up so as to not cause him any more pain.
She released me and I collapsed, but Caius came up behind me and jerked me up by my arms. My legs were trembling so hard beneath me that he had to support all of my weight. I had no strength, no will. I couldn’t stand.
I doubled over, coughing and gagging, as the blood regurgitated, my lungs emptying and my entire being convulsing with the trauma. I began sobbing, half in pain, because of the blood, which had weakened me; and half in pain because I didn’t die.
Why hadn’t they killed me? What the hell did Edward do? I looked at him, hating the agony written on his facial features as he stared at me. “Bella…” he said, weakly, forcing his eyes to meet mine, “Bella, are you…okay?”
I shook my head and collapsed weakly in Caius’ arms. Caius laughed, amused. “How can you play the heroine if you can’t even stand? You won’t save his life by collapsing…or was that never your intent?”
“No!” Edward yelled, “No, you promised.”
Caius didn’t look at Edward, as he said, “Little hint about real vampires, boy:” he threw me down and then turned around, “We lie. And, I am not going to let a worthless being such as yourself manipulate me. You will do as you promised, but I…well, unfortunately, mine isn’t a promise I can keep.”
Edward struggled against the restraints, yelling in anger and pain, before saying, “I swear to God, if you touch her--”
“Yet another fact: we don’t believe in God. So…you two can pray all you want…but, nothing can save you. Must be awful to pray endlessly day after day and not be answered.” Caius grabbed Edward by the throat and growled at him, “Besides…if there is a God…why would He give a damn about a pathetic creature like you…He won’t save you. No one will save you or your whore!”
Edward hit him with his head and kicked him in the stomach, sending him crashing into the wall, which shook and then caved in on him.
In one swift, graceful motion, Caius was to his feet and behind me once again. “Don’t worry…you’ll be seeing her soon enough.” With a growl, he snatched me up and sank his teeth into my neck, drinking fiercely, as the blood pulsed through my veins, now rushing to compensate for the loss.
Edward growled so loud that the whole room shook and threatened to cave in on us. “BELLA!” He yelled, as he gripped the chains, jumped up, wrapping his legs around Demetri’s neck, and snapped it with a mere twitch of his legs.
Demetri fell to the ground and Edward broke free of his restraints, baring his teeth and growling. He lunged for Caius, throwing him off of me, causing my skin to tear from the force, the skin literally hanging off, as the blood gushed out into a small pool.
“Edward…” I sobbed, but he was no longer listening to me. I heard crashes and growls as the vampires all dueled, one with another, Edward standing completely alone.
“This is not how we handle situations, brother.”
“We are not doing any good for our kind by ruling with reckless behaviors.”
Edward sounded delusional as he yelled, “No! Kill me! Kill me, damn it! KILL ME! KILL ME! KILL…ME!”
He threw Caius into a wall and then I heard a familiar voice yell, “Edward, don’t!” Alice. She came back.
Edward clearly didn’t hear her as he lunged for me, trying to save me, but his instincts took over and got the best of him--or the worst of him, as I always saw it--and he involuntarily began drinking me.
“Edward!” Alice yelled, but he no longer cared. He moaned as he clutched me closer to him, rolling over into my blood, which he became submerged in, pulling me on top of him, arching his back and burying his face into my neck to drink as much as he could.
He was sure to get every drop, using his tongue to capture the escaped drops, drinking even more hungrily, growling instinctively in delight as he fulfilled his thirst…giving in to what he had always wanted…my blood.
That made me feel so amazing. Even with the excruciating agony of his venom surging its way through my veins, I could feel it changing me…I could feel the transformation taking place as the familiar fire once again consumed me. I was engulfed in its flames…my entire being taken over by the agony, yet I had never felt happier.
I was so happy that I was finally getting what I wanted that I began laughing hysterically through the pain. I was winning. I was losing, but ultimately, I had won.
Edward was no longer able to control himself as he rolled me over again and dragged his teeth hungrily down my skin, across my neck, down my breasts. His teeth cut into my left breast and he began drinking my blood directly from my heart, as it was being circulated right at this very moment.
I arched my back to be even closer to him, eager for this to happen, eager to feel his venom surge through me and change me. I wanted to be like him…and now I would be.
“Edward, stop it!” Alice struggled to pull him off me, “You’re killing her!” Shut up, Alice. He might as well--while he was on a roll, he deserved to at least enjoy this.
But, Edward pulled away and came to his senses. Damn it. “Oh, my God.” He sobbed, “Bella? Bella, no.”
“It’s too late.” Alice said, pulling him back, “The venom is in her heart now…there’s nothing we can do.”
“NO!” Edward yelled, backing into a wall and covering his mouth with trembling hands, as he sobbed, “No, no, no. What the hell is the matter with me? Damn it, Alice.” He turned on her, “Why did you let me do this?”
“Let you? Like it’s my fault! What was I supposed to do? Nothing I could’ve done would’ve helped. It was meant to happen; we both know that.”
He glared at her momentarily before falling to his knees beside me. “Bella! Bella, please don’t do this. Bella? Bella, I love you.”
“No, you don’t.” I managed to gasp, as the pain began to consume me, “But, thanks for saying it.” I tried to caress his face, but was incapable of moving. I was in too much pain to notice anything.
“No…Bella…” he shook his head, “Bella, I do love you.”
I shook my head once, “I love you…please know that…it was all for you.” I lost myself in the flames, unable to hear or feel or see anything else. All that I knew was the pain.
I heard someone say, “You’re free to go,” and then I fell unconscious, the endless hell of my transformation only beginning. And little did I know, my life only beginning.
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