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Written before the publication of Breaking Dawn...MY ENDING TO THE TWILIGHT SAGA ----- "Edward, what's going on?" He didn't respond. His golden eyes were far away, like he wasn't seeing me. But then something flashed across his face. An expression of anger... "Matt...ew..." Edward managed to get out through clenched teeth, as if he were fighting something internally. "Or maybe he just takes control of your body. That might be it." Jacob had guessed. "Edward!" I reached out a hand to touch his cold skin, but I stopped--my hand hovering in the air between us. The cold distant look had consumed his face. He then spoke in a voice that had pain and fear shooting through me. "Goodbye, Bella," he hissed as he advanced towards me.
26. Chapter 25 - Black Hole
Word Count 2569
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CHAPTER 25: Black Hole
I wasn’t sure how to feel about meeting Jacob for probably the last time face to face.
It made me was to curl up into a ball and cry. Now that I was a vampire, the way I was, and the way I felt was frozen in time. The part of me that desperately loved Edward with a frightening intensity would never change. That part, I was ecstatic about. But the rest of me; the small little part of me that loved Jacob, always would, and there was no changing that now. I would have to take the good with the bad. What was my suffering compared to Jacob’s option to move on.
On another hand, I wasn’t worried about being thirsty around Jacob. From what I’d gathered, to vampires, werewolves weren’t exactly a delicacy. Even if Jacob were human, I couldn’t imagine harming him in anyway. But it was not the physical pain I was worried about. It was the pain that does not heal as easily as a scrape or a cut. A pain that time heals slowly.
And I would be the one to deliver the blow. The one who claimed she loved him, though it made no difference how little that mattered. I loved Jacob, yet all I did was cause him pain. I loved Edward, and the same thing happened.
I was a black hole.
I had known it from the beginning. I sucked everything around me into my bad luck and my trouble. Everyone who was close to me got hurt. It didn’t matter whether it was an enemy bend on killing me that hurt them, or if I hurt them myself…everyone was hurt. Damage was rendered. All the trouble was centered on me, and those who I loved were always caught in the fall out. It was infuriating. And somehow, I had people—like Edward and Jacob, and Carlisle and Esme and Alice, and all the other Cullens, and my mom and dad—who loved me, and were willing to do anything because they loved me and I couldn’t do a thing about it.
So I just kept hurting them.
And they just kept taking it.
Because, for some insane, warped, twisted reason, they said they loved me.
I walked into the living room to find Edward sprawled on the couch. He looked up as I crossed the room slowly.
“Did you talk to Jacob?” He asked, jumping up, suddenly at my side. He grabbed my hand in his.
“Yah.” I kept my eyes on the carpeted floor. “I’m going to meet him soon.”
“That’s good.” I couldn’t interpret the emotions in his voice, and I still didn’t look at his voice.
“I’m going to go hunting first. I don’t know how you stand it all the time.”
“It gets better,” he said, his voice softening a bit.
“I’m going to tell him goodbye,” I told Edward. He did not reply, though I could feel the gaze of his golden eyes on me. “I won’t talk to him in person again. After this we can move away and be a family.”
“Do you want me to come hunting with you?”
“No, I want some time to think before I go talk to Jake.” Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Edward nod. I looked up at him, and his face was an unemotional mask. “I’m sorry,” I whispered, knowing how much pain it caused him when I brought up Jacob. Edward shook his head.
“Don’t be sorry. I’m the one who should be sorry. I can tell that it hurts you, and I don’t know what to do.” I shook my head, leaning it into the crook of his neck and his shoulder. He wrapped his arms around me and I mirrored him.
“Don’t do this now. Don’t be Mr.I’m-Going-To-Twist-Everything-So-That-It’s-My-Fault.”
“I’m not,” he argued. I smiled ruefully into his shoulder. Being immortal did not change the way he smelled to me. If anything, he smelled even more amazing, if that were possible. I sighed, lifting my head to look at him. Without a word, I pressed my lips gently to his.
“I love you. I know I’ve told you that a million times, but it doesn’t change the fact. And I love you hardly covers it, but it’s still true.” His mouth twitched, but didn’t shape into a complete smile.
“I know what you mean,” he whispered. “You do whatever you need to, my Bella.” I felt my hand slip off his cheek as I slipped out the door with the whisper:
“I’ll be back soon.”
I hunted alone, letting my instincts take over. I did not think of Jacob while I did. Soon I finished hunting, and ran towards Forks. I took a route through the woods, since it was the middle of the day.
Suddenly, with my intensified sense of smell, I pick up an old, musty scent, like a wet dog. I realized that this is what Jacob smelled like to the Cullens…and now to me. I followed the scent to a break between the trees. I sensed Jacob far off in the trees. With my new eyes, I saw a speck of brown far away, but I knew Jacob couldn’t see that far. Jacob knew that vampires could hear from further away, so it didn’t surprise me when he called out to me before he could see me.
“Ack, Bella! Why’d you have to bring your bloodsucker? I thought this was between us.” I stopped where I was. He smelled vampire and thought it was Edward. This was going to be more difficult than I thought it was. I almost wished I was still mortal so I could cry.
But I needed to do this—for Jacob—no matter how hard this may be for me.
I kept walking until I was just outside his range of vision and paused. I took a deep breath—bracing myself before I slowly walked into the clearing.
I watched Jacob’s face warily. A range of emotions flew across his features—anticipation, anxiety, confusion, shock, denial, more shock, horror—as I stopped twenty feet from him.
“I’m…sorry, Jake,” I whispered, lowering my gaze to the mossy ground. There was silence for a long time. I couldn’t speak. Words kept running around in my head, but I couldn’t catch enough of them to form a sentence.
Sorry… couldn’t tell you… Volturi… promises… sorry.
I could hear a squirrel rustle in the bushes far away. I could hear cars on the road. I could hear heartbeats of humans almost as far as the road. I could hear Jacob’s heart—strong and loud; feel the blood rushing through his veins. I could still smell the wet dog scent that seemed to be coming from Jacob. I saw and heard this all through my new senses. The sunlight filtered down through the trees and glittered off my skin.
“Bella…” I could hear the layers of emotion in Jacob’s voice, though I didn’t look up at him.
Anger. He must have been trying to keep his shape together. I wondered what must’ve been going through his mind.
Pain. That was the hardest. I could hear the hurt and betrayal layered thick as he spoke my name. I cringed as if the pain that laced through his voice had physically shot out like lightning and burned me.
“Why?” There was no anger in his voice this time. Only pain.
“I was dying, Jake,” I said, my voice barely a whisper. Neither of us had moved an inch. I was still staring at the ground—unable to meet his gaze. “I would be dead right now if they hadn’t helped me.”
“You are dead.” I looked up at Jacob, and he was staring at the ground, the same as I had been.
“No,” I disagreed, “I’m here, talking to you.”
“But you’re one of them.” The anger started to edge back into his voice. His black bangs hung down over his eyes. “You’re a filthy bloodsucker, Bella!” I didn’t say anything, his words stinging me deep. Never would I have thought Jacob would call me that name. I stared at his bare feet. “Are you gonna start suckin’ people’s blood now? Charlie’ll have a nice break from traffic jams; dealing with all the murder cases!”
“Shut up, Jacob!” I shouted at him. “It’s not like that!”
“Oh, really?” He yelled back. With my improved vision, I could see his black eyes, burning bright with pain twisted into anger. “How so?”
“I’m not going to hurt people. You know me better than that. I’m still Bella.”
“Really? Are you really? How can you still be Bella when your instincts tell you to kill people? How can you still be Bella when you don’t trip over stuff all the time? You can’t be Bella anymore!” He shouted. I felt a stab through my heart.
Those words had been my exact concerns only a few weeks ago. The sword twisted in the wound as my eyes picked up tears glimmering in the corners of his eyes.
“You can’t be Bella,” he kept shouting, “when you smell like one of them, and your skin sparkles, and you have fricking blood smeared on you cheeks!” I lifted a hand to the corner of my lips, horrified as I feel a faint crusty texture of dried blood there. I wiped it off hastily.
“Just save it. You’re not the girl I fell in love with.” He turned to walk away.
“No! Jake, wait!” I shouted. He stopped, turning back to me, his eyes narrowed into to suspicious slits, angry tears still glittering in the corners of his eyes. It cut me through the middle again.
“What? You have thirty seconds to make me stay, bloodsucker.” I flinched as he drove the sword deeper.
“Jake, I’m still Bella. Remember when we built those motorcycles together in your garage, and I kept crashing when I tried to ride them? And remember when I traded a lifetime of slavery for a box of candy hearts on Valentine’s Day?
“And remember when we went to the movies with Mike Newton and he ended up puking his guts out? You can’t just forget all the fun times we had together? We go deeper than this, Jake. Whatever happened to “I think maybe I’d still take you after”? You’re my best friend, Jacob. Don’t do this to me now.”
I hoped my words were enough.
He paused, balanced on the balls of his feet. The silence stretched like it had before, only I was waiting—I had said my piece.
Finally, Jacob turned back to me, and gave me one agonized look before rushing at me. There was a split second of fear when I thought he was trying to kill me, but then his strong arms wrapped around my waist, and I felt tears falling down his cheeks—dripping onto my face. He felt so warm and human. I hugged him back, careful to be gentle as not to hurt him.
“God, Bella,” he choked, his hand sliding over my hair.
“I don’t want this to be goodbye, Jake, but it has to be,” I whispered into his broad chest. He smelled awful, but I didn’t care. He was still Jacob and a small part of me still—and always would—love him.
“I know, honey. And it hurts.” I felt as if I was about to cry, but no tears came. I couldn’t speak, so I just nodded. We stayed like that for a long time, just hugging, remembering—our unspoken goodbyes.
“Well,” I said in a shaky voice, laughing a little, “we’re certainly something you don’t see everyday.” He laughed with me—melancholy amusement echoed of the silent trees.
“I think we could be the world’s first vampire-werewolf couple. Wha’da’ya say?” He was smiling, but it didn’t touch his eyes.
“Sorry, I’m kinda already taken,” I joked back.
“Darn it,” he snapped his fingers in defeat.
“Didn’t this already happen?” I asked, laughing a bit.
“Yah, I think it did.”
“Déjà vu,” he told me. I really, really wished I could cry. I wanted to so badly. Tears still oozed out of Jacob’s eyes, and it dug the sword deeper and deeper.
“I’m a black hole, Jake,” I admitted, pressing myself to his chest again. “I suck everyone I’m close to out of the light. I’m horrible, and I shouldn’t be able to hurt people this way! Why would anyone love a black hole?”
“Maybe because we’re all masochists?” He suggested. I laughed emptily.
“Possibly,” I allowed.
“Or maybe there’s something to be said about being drawn towards danger. You would know all about that, wouldn’t ya’, Bells?” He elbowed me in the ribs. I still felt like I wanted to cry.
“Yah. I’m the expert.” Silence surrounded us.
“Say something, Bells,” Jacob prompted. His voice was rough, as if he had something in his throat.
“This is killing me, Jake.” I admitted. God, how I wanted to cry. He just nodded, wiping his eyes with the back of his wrist, and laughed.
“You’re immortal now. It’s not that easy to kill you anymore.”
“I’m being serious,” I informed him. My voice shook as would if I were able to cry.
“I’m just…trying to joke, Bella. If I joke, it doesn’t hurt as much,” he admitted. More tears fell freely down his cheek.
“Why can’t I stop hurting you?” I asked desperately, burying my face in his chest again.
“You can’t help but hurt the ones you love, Bells,” he told me. I just shook my head and pressed myself tighter to him.
“You know I wish it were enough,” I whispered. I felt him nod, his chin on the top of my head. I pulled away far, far too soon, and let him go—feeling the heat drain away as I retracted my arms from around him.
“I guess this is goodbye,” Jacob said. I nodded.
“Face to face,” I clarified, “Phone calls are allowed. Emails too.”
“What if something big happens?” He asked.
“Then that’s allowed.”
I didn’t reply. He didn’t speak again either, just stood there, drinking me in. I did the same, engraining him into my memory; trying to etch every detail into my mind.
After an immeasurable length of time, he looked up, and so did I, staring at him expectantly.
“Well, Jake,” I took in a deep breath, “goodb—” He put a hand over my mouth and shook his head.
“No goodbyes.” More tears spilled down his beautiful russet colored cheeks. “Just turn around and walk away.” I nodded, drew in a shaky breath, and did as he asked.
I sprinted off into the green forest without so much as a backwards glance.