6 YRS POST-BD: On her first day of H.S, Nessie befriends Chelsea Gray - a girl with a dark secret. When Alice can't see her future and she miraculously survives a fatal car crash, Nessie finds she has more in common with her than she thought. BOOK CANON.
2. The Secrets of Chelsea Gray
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Twilight Saga: Crescent (Book 5)
Chapter Two: "The Secrets of Chelsea Gray"
Original Twilight Characters, Locations and Events (c) Stephanie Meyer
All other Characters, Locations, and Events (c) Fire Inferno & Leigh-Anne Kaylen
If you asked me -- which I guess in some cosmic way you are -- the pep rally couldn't end quickly enough. We stood, sat, danced and jumped around for several hours while they taught us all the cheers, rules of the school, and a bunch of other boring stuff. Chelsea and I spent the majority of the time commenting on how fake the student council president was (Rosalie could put her to shame), how obvious it was that the football captain was "roid-ing it up" (Emmett could crush him, even without his vampire strength), and discussing the theories as to why white people tried to be gangsters (...yeah no one is really that gangster in my family...maybe Carlisle...maybe).
"So Ruh-nez-meh," she slurred out, obviously faltering over the pronunciation as we clamored down the bleachers towards the lunch room, trying to avoid being trampled by food-deprived adolescents.
"You can call me Nessie," I interrupted with a smile, "everyone else does."
Chelsea let out a relieved sigh. "So Nessie, what does your schedule look like? Maybe we have a couple classes together?"
I rummaged through my Coach bag in an attempt to find the scrap of paper my grandparents had written my schedule down on. I groaned at the complete disarray of my purse: how I managed to find anything in here was beyond me.
"Um...well, if I could find it, I'd tell you what my classes are," I said as we shuffled along with the rest of the crowd at the base of the bleachers, still digging through the endless chasm that was my bag, "but it would seem that my bag got tired of waiting for lunch and decided to eat it."
Chelsea laughed. "At least we know your bag is an herbivore. I might have to rethink our friendship if your bag wanted to eat me.”
“I wouldn’t be so sure,” I said casually while still rummaging through it, “my brother Emmett swore he saw this bag eat his steak once.”
“Really!?!” she asked incredulously.
“No!” I said, amazed that she actually believed me. She playfully slapped me on the arm and gave me her “exasperated eyes.”
“You should be nice Miss Masen,” she teased.
“I’m sorry, but what am I gonna do about my schedule!?!” I cried, getting slightly flustered, “I don’t even know what my first class is!”
“Settle down,” laughed Chelsea, “the office can print you off another one. I've already had to go back twice to get reprints. The same thing happened to me, only it was a puddle and a binder that ate mine. Want to go get another one?"
The two of us squeezed through the gym doors as the student body headed towards the lunch room. Thankfully, the main office was in another direction so we weren’t herded like sheep. We turned the corner and headed down the hallway that led to the main office when I felt a subtle buzzing in my bag. Fortunately my bag wasn’t in the mood for apples because my iPhone was much easier to find than a slip of paper. I pulled it out and saw that my mom had sent me a text message.
"You have an iPhone!?! I'm so jealous!" cried Chelsea as I flipped through the menus to get to my mother's text. I smiled, slightly embarrassed by my friends reaction to the proof of my family's exorbitant wealth.
"I got it for Christmas last year," I answered sheepishly.
Nessie -- Alice and I are heading to the lunchroom to "eat." Come find us whenever. Feel free to bring your friend. Love you! -- Mom
I typed out a quick affirmative response and threw the phone back into my bag. Was she trying to kill me? What was she thinking signing the message “Mom?” How would I have explained that to Chelsea!?!
"You're so lucky! I just have a cruddy TracPhone from Target! I don't even get texting!"
"It's not that special," I mumbled, thankful she didn't pick up on the contents of the message, "my foster parents just like to spoil me. They've already picked out the car that they’re going to get me for my 16th birthday."
"What!?! You get your own car!?!" She let out a squeal that could rival even the perkiest of Alice's. "What are they getting you?"
“Um…a Lamborghini Estoque…”
“A Lamborghini Est -- seriously!?! Those things cost…well I’m not sure what they cost, but its way more than I could ever hope to afford!” she said rather fast, “Your parents must be loaded!”
“They do alright. Just…try to keep this to yourself. I don’t really want it getting around how wealthy my parents are…my family really doesn’t like to draw attention to ourselves. You can imagine the types of rumors that would go around.”
"Yeah, I can imagine. I remember all the horrible rumors that went around at my last school when everyone found out I was an orphan."
"You're an orphan?!?" I asked incredulously, immediately embarrassed by my incredibly rude reaction. “Sorry,” I apologized, blushing.
"It’s okay,” she said with a smile. “My dad left shortly after I was born and my mom just passed away recently from brain cancer."
"Oh my god, I'm so sorry," I said, unable to imagine having to watch a loved one slowly succumb to something as devastating as cancer.
“Like I said, it’s okay.”
"Do you know what happened to your dad?" I asked, not wanting to accidentally linger on any unhappy memories of her mother.
"No one really knows," she said with an informative tone, remaining eerily calm. "They think he might have died a few years ago in Europe, but they are still trying to confirm it. Until then, I'm just hanging out at a local orphanage. Once they confirm I have no living relatives, I'll be placed into a foster home."
"You don’t have any other family? No one you could stay with?"
She shook her head. "My mom was an only child, and her parents died in a car accident before I was even born. Nothing is really known about my father's side."
“God that must suck, not having anyone.”
“Eh, you get used to it. Sometimes it’s nice living on your own.”
“Everyone gets lonely every once and awhile, but you put up with it. At least I’m back at school now and have something to do during the day.”
“I hear you there; summer vacation was starting to get boring.” Especially when it’s lasted for the past two years. “So do you know anyone else from your other schools?”
“No, my last school was a private school, and all the students went on to another fancy private school. Me, I’m not very fancy, so I decided to give public school a try.”
"That’s cool. My family just moved here so I don’t really know anyone else either. If you didn’t have any other plans, would you like to join my sisters and me for lunch?"
Her eyes brightened and a smile exploded from her face. "I'd love that. I mean, I wouldn't want to intrude..."
"Not at all, we would love to have you."
I couldn't help but smile at my double entendre. (*)
Chelsea and I managed to make our way to the main office. Behind the desk was a very grumpy looking middle-aged woman. Her hair was jet black, chopped close to her head with gray coming in at the roots. She had red-rimmed glasses that sat on the bridge of her nose with a simple silver chain that fell from behind her ears, making it so her spectacles could easily hang around her neck. It was obvious from her demeanor she didn't enjoy her job, and I had a feeling that she did not like printing off new schedules for "irresponsible snotty-nosed brats," even though my nose was snot free.
"Hi," I said meekly, waiting for the woman to notice my presence.
"Can I help you?" she said through the loud 'chomps' of her gum, peering over the tops of her glasses and into my very soul. Her voice was nasally, high pitched, and highly irritating. Maybe she was grumpy because she had to listen to herself talk all day.
"Yeah, I lost my schedule; would I be able to get another copy please?" I asked as politely as possible, not wanting to set this woman off.
She sighed. "Name?"
"September 10th, 1997" (**)
"Nine." Wouldn't it have been obvious? Wasn't today for freshman only?
The secretary clicked around on her computer as the printer next to her came to life. She grabbed the ejected paper and handed it to me without even looking up. "Have a nice day," she said, running on autopilot.
"Thanks," I said, grabbing the paper and getting out of that office as fast as humanly possible. "Man, that woman was crabby with a capital K," I said once we were a safe distance from the office.
"I know what you mean," laughed Chelsea. "You should have seen her when I came back the second time. I thought she was honestly just going to ignore me and continue playing her game of solitaire...which she was losing by the way. How do you lose at computer solitaire?!?"
"I don't know, but it seems like she would be the kind of person who would be able to pull it off."
"Haha, alright Nessie," laughed Chelsea, "let’s see what your schedule look like."
I handed her the sheet of paper, figuring her looking over it would be more effective than me reading it out.
Masen, Renesmee C. -- DOB: 09/10/1997
Sex: F -- Grade: 9
1st -- French -- Bougie, C. -- 209
2nd -- Geography – Harker, J. -- 232
3rd -- Math -- Tangen, T. -- 215
4th -- H. English -- Close, D. -- 122
5th -- Biology -- Banner, D. -- 134
6th -- Drama -- Sadek, V. -- 107
"Nessie! We have almost every class together!"
"Seriously!?!" I squealed, ripping the paper out of her hands.
“Ah!” winced Chelsea. Suddenly, the smell of blood hit my nostril and I could feel the inferno erupt in the back of my throat. I closed my eyes and swallowed; trying to douse the fire with my saliva…it obviously wasn’t working because I could feel myself losing control. Then, as suddenly as the smell had arrived, it was gone. As I forced myself to come back to my senses, I looked up at Chelsea.
“You okay Ness?” she asked, a concerned look in her eyes.
“Yeah, I’m fine. I just…don’t like blood…”
“Yeah, from your paper cut.”
“What paper cut?”
“The…the one I just gave you. You started bleeding…”
“No I didn’t…”
I looked quickly around, seeing no other source the smell of blood could have come from.
“Are you sure? I swear I smelt blood,” I said without thinking.
Oh shit! “Oh,” I said, frantically trying to formulate an excuse in my head, “you know. I could kinda…taste it. You know the iron…and stuff…” Taste it?!? Real smooth Nessie. “Are you sure you’re okay?”
“Yep! See!” she said, holding out her hand for my inspection. Sure enough, I couldn’t see or smell any traces of the paper cut I was sure she received.
“Well, that’s good,” I said, hoping she wouldn’t linger on my stupid, stupid comment. “So, about our classes?” I said, purposely raising the pitch in my voice to show her that I’d moved on.
"Yeah! Our homeroom is the only class we don't have together,” she said, apparently forgetting my previous comment, “I'm taking Italian instead of French. Nessie! This is so cool! We can have homework and study parties and even do all our projects together!"
We both had huge, goofy grins on our faces as we quickly hugged each other.
"You're really warm, mind if I borrow you as a blanket?"
I stared at her, unsure of what to say. My face must have been quite the sight, because Chelsea burst out into laughter. It wasn't long until it spread to me and the two of us made our way to the lunch room arm-in-arm, laughing like fools, completely forgetting about the non-existent paper cut.
Reaching the lunch room, the two of us got in line and grabbed our lunch. I didn't grab much food, knowing I'd be forced to act as garbage disposal for my mom and aunt, but I was amazed at the amount of food Chelsea managed to pile on her tray. If this was how much she normally ate, I was flabbergasted at how she kept her figure. I scanned the busy lunchroom, looking for my mom and aunt when I saw them smiling and waving at us from a table near the window.
Chelsea and I walked over to meet them. I noticed the apprehension in her eyes, her subconscious human instincts telling her these inhumanely beautiful girls were dangerous. I gave her a quick nudge and a smile, letting her know it was okay. She gave a weak smile and sat down next to me, across the table from Mom and Alice.
"It's good to see you again," my mother said smiling. "My name's Bella and this is Alice."
"It's nice to formally meet you," said Chelsea, still visibly nervous but doing her best to hide it. "My name's Chelsea, Chelsea Gray."
"So how do you like school so far?" asked my mother, obviously sensing Chelsea's discomfort and doing her best to alleviate it.
"It's okay. I'm excited that Nessie and I have most of our classes together. It'll be nice to have at least one person I know in my classes."
"Well, now you'll have two because Nessie and I have a few classes together too, isn't that right Nessie?" my mom said with a wink.
I gave her a polite smile, but in my mind I was beating her with a stick. Ugh, why does my mom have to be so happy all the time? Oh yeah, that's right, because she gets sex every night -- stupid horny vampire parents.
"So Chelsea, I love your blouse!" squealed my aunt, trying to divert the conversation away from the angst between my mother and me.
"Thanks, it was my mom's," she answered, hiding the pain I knew she would be feeling. I threw my aunt a death glare telling her to drop it, but she obviously didn't see it and didn't pick up on the tense Chelsea used.
"Well, she has great fashion sense! I'd love to meet her!"
"ALICE!" I whisper-shouted, trying to shut her up before she dug herself even deeper.
"It's okay Nessie," said Chelsea with a beautiful smile on her face, "she didn't know." She turned to my aunt, and with a fortitude I don't think even Carlise could copy, told my aunt the story she told me before. I could see my family’s unbeating hearts breaking.
"I'm so sorry Chelsea!" Alice said, trying to find the words to form an appropriate apology. I’d never seen my aunt this flustered before.
"It's okay," she said, "like I said, you didn't know. Besides, what I can see from your fashion sense, she would have loved to meet you too."
"Well, lunch is almost over. I think we should head out and get ready for a fun filled afternoon of shortened classes," said my mom, breaking the awkward silence that formed after Chelsea's response.
I looked at Chelsea and nodded, motioning for her to lead the way. As we left the lunchroom, I could hear Alice and my mother whispering to each other behind us, too low for human ears to pick up.
"I can't believe I didn't see that when I decided to ask her the question -- I feel like such an insensitive bitch."
"Alice, I'm sure she realizes it wasn't intentional. What’s more interesting is the fact that somehow you were blocked. We know you can't see Nessie's future; do you think her being there could have something to do with it?"
"Maybe, but she didn't have any influence on my question or Chelsea's answer, and I have been able to see things when she's been around before. My visions are the same, except it’s like she isn't there. I think it’s more likely that I just can't see Chelsea's future."
"How is that possible? She doesn't smell like a shape-shifter and I doubt she's half-vampire. Do you think that she was like I was when I was human, only she blocks your class of powers?"
"I don't know, maybe. We'll just have to wait until Jasper comes to school tomorrow to see if he can feel her emotions."
As much as I hated my mom and aunt talking about my new friend as if she was their new science project, they had a very valid point: Alice should have been able to see Chelsea's answer to her question. Even if I was there, she's always been able to see things that I had no impact on. Then, there is the issue with the paper cut. I of all people should know that she was bleeding, but she denied it and there was no residual damage. Even if it was small, my vampire eyes would have been able to see it.
She had a heartbeat so she couldn’t be a vampire, and she had a normal body temperature so she wasn’t half-vampire or a shape-shifter either. Blocking Alice’s vision could be written off as a human trait, but what about the rapid healing? I glanced over at my friend, trying to figure out what secrets she could be hiding.
I mentally slapped myself; I was the last person that should be critical of any secrets she chose to keep. She doesn’t appear to pose a threat, so for right now; I’m just going to enjoy having a friend.
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Originally Posted: January 13th, 2009
* Double entendre is a figure of speech, essentially meaning that the phrase could be taken multiple ways. In this case, one meaning could be that the Cullen girls would like to have Chelsea join them for lunch. The other is that they would like to have Chelsea as their meal.
** Nessie's actual birthday is September 10th, 2006. It would take her approximately 6 years to reach the physical maturity of a high school student, which would make this story take place in 2012. So if she wanted to pose as a 15 year old, she would have needed to be born in 1997.