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Choices

Summary:
Choices Banner This story takes place in Eclipse when Riley goes to Bella’s room to gather her belongings for Victoria. This is what could have happened if Bella had arrived while he was still there, and the events following. Written pre-Breaking Dawn, so that book will be disregarded here. This will include my idea of how the series would have ended.


Notes:
Choices Banner *Written before Breaking Dawn was released, so that book will be ignored with this story.


17. Tenacity

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1925   Review this Chapter

(Previously):

BPOV

"Alright, then, let’s continue. Rosalie is next," Carlisle stated.

This is what I had been dreading. I hadn’t even really spoken to Rosalie since my change. She had kept mainly to herself, keeping her distance from me. She didn’t seem as hostile towards me as she used to, but there were definitely moments when I would catch a glimpse of the old Rosalie, the one that adamantly disliked me. There were also moments when I had caught her looking at me out of the corner of her eye, with an expression much like pity. It was very conflicting, but I hadn’t had much time to worry about it with everything else going on. I was incredibly nervous about this...all Edward had ever said about Rosalie’s ‘gift’ was that she had a lot of tenacity. How would that affect either of us when doubled? If she firmly believes that I don’t belong with them, and I firmly believe that I do, what would happen? I guess we were about to find out.

CHAPTER 17: Tenacity

BPOV

"Whenever you’re ready, Bella," Carlisle encouraged me. I forced myself back to the present, and turned to face Rosalie.

She looked irritated as I met her eyes. I began focusing on her, but I felt resistence; she didn’t want to share this with me. Closing my eyes, I lowered my head and concentrated, putting all of my energy into it. My head snapped up as my eyes met hers again; I had succeeded - we were connecting.

A flurry of conflicting waves began surging through me; anger, sorrow, confusion, jealousy, even compassion, and something else that I couldn’t quite figure out. It was extremely confusing, my head felt like it was spinning, then Rosalie picked out one of the emotions, and settled on it - anger.

"What, Bella?" she said, annoyance dripping from her voice. "Is this what you wanted? To feel how much you irritate me?"

"No, Rosalie. What I wanted was for you to not be irritated with me anymore," I replied icily. I was surprised at what I was feeling...it was hard to fight off the urge to lash out at her. I felt so resentful, so angry...

"Well, wouldn’t that be perfect...to have each and every one of us simply adore you...sorry I can’t make that happen," she spat bitterly. A flicker of a different emotion crossed her face, too quickly for me to understand it.

"Why don’t you just give it a break, Rosalie? What did I ever do to you anyway? I’ve hardly ever even spoken to you. After the last real conversation we had, when you told me how your human life had ended, I thought we were making progress. Even though you still disapproved of my desire to join your family permanently, at least we were starting to communicate! Besides, how can you be mad at me for this? It’s not like I called anyone up and said, ‘Hey, come change me!’" I was trying to keep my tone reasonable, but I was on the verge of yelling.

"It doesn’t matter - you would have had Edward do it anyway, eventually," she replied scathingly. I took a step back as her conflicting waves tore through me, sadness now mixed in with the anger. "So young," she hissed. "You don’t even know what you would have wanted from life. You think you know everything - you know nothing!" She took a deep breath and braced herself. Her whole body convulsed slightly, despair taking over her features.

Suddenly a huge surge of sorrow hit me. It was crippling; I doubled over and had to rest my hands on my knees. I felt as though the force of the emotions had knocked the wind out of me. She was showing me how she had felt - how she still feels, everyday - realizing she would never be able to have children.

As I took a deep breath, I fought to push the feelings back. Still leaning over for support, I replied, "You're wrong, Rosalie - I do know what I want. And yes, I would have had Edward change me, at some point. There’s no question in my mind about that. Why can’t you just accept it? I am different than you Rosalie...I didn’t want the same human life that you regret not having. Yes, I feel your sorrow, but I don’t share it. That’s not my fault, even if you do want to blame me for all of you problems. My life is with Edward, and your family - whether you like it or not, you’re going to have to deal with it," I spat, still fighting to right myself.

Her eyes narrowed into slits. She started to move toward me, and I felt her anger increase. That was enough; I was not going to fight with her. I stood upright again, as a massive desire to get her to understand my point of view ripped through me, and she froze in her tracks. She started backing up, as if unwillingly, until she was back to where she had started from. She looked frozen in place, as well as completely confused. I was relieved as I let go of this new desire and mentally pushed it outwards, toward her. She rocked onto her heels, stumbling, before she fell backwards onto the ground. Emotion upon emotion began to fly across her perfect features; from our connection, I could tell that I had managed to break past her anger - she was now feeling every complex emotion I had felt since being bitten, including my incredible and unbreakable love for Edward and his family.

She looked up at me, her eyes wide. We just stared at each other in silence, as we both grasped to understand one another. She slowly began to nod her head, her forehead creasing. I tried to reach out to her, speaking silently. This needed to be private, between just the two of us.

"Rosalie, I am sorry. I understand your loss, I could feel it. I know what you live with everyday. If I could change that for you, I would. You need to understand, though - that’s not what I wanted for myself - do you see that now? This is where I belong. Don’t resent me for giving up things that you wanted," I looked into her eyes, hoping I’d gotten through.

She hesitated, then answered me with her thoughts. "I am sorry as well, Bella. I never fully understood you, or the depth of your feelings. I don’t know that I ever would have, if it weren’t for this - connection - that we were able to have. You’re right...you’re not like me. You are more suited to this life than I ever will be. You have been ever since you first met Edward, I see that now. And believe it or not, I haven’t completely hated you this whole time..." Her mind switched gears, and she showed me her thoughts of when I was still ‘asleep;’ how she’d stayed with me in Edward’s room for a bit, concerned as she gazed down at me, wondering if I would ever actually ‘wake up.’ She showed me how furious she was to learn that Victoria had taken my mother and stepfather’s lives, as well as their unborn baby.

"I didn’t understand you before, that’s why I focused on my anger when we first connected; I was protecting myself. I am sorry about that," she continued to meet my gaze, and I finally recognized that other emotion that I initially couldn’t figure out - it was love. She did actually care about me, even if it was only a little.

Rosalie slowly stood up, and walked towards me. I mirrored her movements, and we caught each other in a gentle, but intense hug. If I hadn’t shocked everyone before, with the episode with Emmett, I certainly had now. Silence rang loudly...even in everyone’s minds again. After a couple of minutes passed, Emmett broke the silence.

"Holy crap," Emmett said, and everyone else simply nodded their heads in agreement.

A few more minutes passed. Rosalie looked around at her family, who were all stunned. She chuckled softly. "Yes, everyone, Bella and I have come to an understanding. Is that so difficult to believe?"

She was greeted again with silence, except for a tiny snort that came from Emmett.

"Anyway," Rosalie continued, becoming annoyed by everyone’s continuing shock, "what’s more interesting is that Bella here is perhaps more powerful than we thought."

"What do you mean by that, Rosalie?" Carlisle questioned.

"Well, I’m sure you all noticed me make a move towards her...I was actually going to slap her," she said, glancing at me regretfully. "Imagine my surprise when I felt her slip into my mind, demanding that I step back, away from her. My body could not help but follow her command. I felt a little like a puppet - like she was pulling the strings," she concluded.

"Bella, were you aware of any of this?" Carlisle asked me.

"I remember Rosalie approaching me, and thinking she wanted to fight. That was not something I wanted at all...I just deeply wanted her to understand how I felt. I pushed those feelings toward her, but that’s all I really did," I said.

"She can control actions, too?" Edward asked in disbelief.

"Cool!!" Emmett exclaimed.

"I’m not sure exactly, but it is definitely interesting..." Carlisle said slowly.

"Bella, what happens if you quit concentrating on us individually, and instead focus on all of us at the same time?" Carlisle asked, his thoughts changing paths.

"Um..." I closed my eyes, and stopped trying to limit my mind. I thought of them all, united together, as my new family, and concentrated on that. With a rush, I opened my eyes. My sight spun around the circle, taking all of them in. It felt as though a giant wind had swept over me, and suddenly a force rocked my frame as I felt all of their gifts at once; it was too much. I could almost see it leave my body - like this power flowed through the air surrounding me. Instantly, each member of my family stepped away from me, then fell backwards onto the ground.

"Whoa..." Jasper whispered.

"Wow, Bella...you’re like a super vampire," Alice murmured, clearly in awe.

I rolled my eyes. "Hardly, Alice." I laughed at her silliness, even though I was still trying to understand what had just happened.

Carlisle stood slowly, seemingly unsure of what to say. "Bella, thank you for cooperating. I’m going to go to my study now, to try to think some of this through. You should try to relax for a while," he said warmly, but hesitantly, before retreating back to the house. He was clearly quite eager to dissect my bizarre behavior.

Edward approached me, perhaps a little wary. "Are you alright?"

"I feel fine, Edward. Don’t worry," I replied.

A bit less cautious, he continued. "Why don’t we go to our room for a while, and read? It should keep your mind focused enough so that you don’t have to hear anyone else unless you want to. It’s a good way for you to practice blocking others out," he smirked at me.

"That does sound nice. It’s all so confusing!" I faintly smiled back at him, and we walked back towards the house, hand in hand.

"Yes, it is..." he murmured softly, almost to himself. As I glanced over at him, I thought I saw something in his expression...anxiety? His thoughts were vague, almost guarded. I was about to ask about it, when he looked back at me and smiled warmly, as if reassuring me. I guess it was nothing to worry about.