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Moonlight's Shackles

Summary:
There are consequences to a love as deep as Edwards and Bella’s and they will not be ignored. Is there such a thing as love, or is all love inherently a triumph of imagination over intelligence, emotion over the deepest most profound truth. Is love freedom or only our acceptence of Moonlight’s Shackles. [Set in AU New Moon with no Jacob.]


Notes:
Disclaimer: I don't anything from Twilight, never have never will. Note to Reviewers: If you review you get a teaser for the next chapter, so if you read and think to yourself oh I would like some more post and you'll get it. ;]
Authors Note:
What if there was no Jacob when Edward had left, assuming that Bella somehow persevered I’d assume she’d come out of the whole situation a lot differently. I liked Twilight and even New Moon, but after that it just got a little too nice for me. Everyone except for the villains was just too kind. The mystery was gone. This fic is trying to get it back. Enjoy. However I am trying my best to keep Bella from going batshit crazy either; I think it’s a progression. People are complicated.


5. Chapter Four: The Monster in the Basement

Rating 0/5   Word Count 1510   Review this Chapter

Captivated again, Bella thought ruefully. Was she always destined to be carted away by those more powerful? But it wasn’t as if she simply had given up this time. If anything, this was her taking the initiative. No matter how crazy Erin seemed – and Bella reflected, looking at the leather gloves and her wild appearance, she did seem pretty crazy – she knew something about him. More explicitly, the pine forest had reminded her how much she needed him. Erin must have known where he was and that was why she had come. How she would know, who she even was seemed kind of unimportant at the thought of knowing even some detail about him. She knew he didn’t want her, but that didn’t stop this need coursing through her, this withdrawal.

They drove through the still snowy streets of Forks in complete silence. It was an old car, and Bella relaxed into the sound of clunks and wind buzzing through invisible holes in the frame. Eventually, after threading through side streets and alleyways, Bella hadn’t ever remembered arriving at what Bella supposed had to be the back of the gym. In front of the old sloping building there was a ramp for disabled people and a loading dock. Erin pulled up in one of the staff parking slots.

Bella got out and looked warily at the door. Maybe this was a bad idea. She knew as much about them as she did about Trigonometry. This was not what Ed--she stopped herself--he would have deemed safe. She whispered an apology to him in her mind and stepped forward. Someone else would have offered small talk or said something, but Bella merely stared at the small red door wondering how they were going to be able to get in. This seemed to be no problem for Erin, who merely went up to the door and turned the handle.

Bella was relieved that there would be no climbing over fences. “Erin,” she hedged hesitantly. The hallway that the door led to was crowded by boxes, old gym equipment and broken exercise machines. Bella could swear in the corner there was even a cobweb. “Why are we meeting here?”

Industry–sized light bulbs swung from thick wires hanging from the ceiling like stalagmites. They cast a cold, sallow light in which she saw Erin pause. Then a thick laugh hit the air like a belly flop. “I’ve wondered that sometimes, myself. Damien can be a little overdramatic.”

Bella would have used exactly that phrase to describe Erin, but even if she wanted to mention it she couldn’t, her lungs didn’t have any extra air to spare for talking. It was hard wading through the boxes and Bella felt like a cross between Godzilla, tramping through a miniature city of broken toys and machines, and an adventurer wading through the Amazon, slipping through the crooks of lumbering lockers and dusty bins of balls. At least there weren’t any leeches here. Bella stopped, narrowing her eyes and watching as Erin continued on. What if they were? What if Erin was only leading her to her death? How else would they know about him unless they were vampires themselves, maybe not Erin but—

“You coming?” Erin’s voice was distant and tinny.

Yesterday, the thought wouldn’t have disturbed her as much, but now it seemed as if the world had gained back some of it luster. Now that she had her memories back again. The hallway ended abruptly turning off onto a flight of partially green–carpeted stairs. Bella sneezed and a cloud of dust blew up in her face.

“It gets better once we get to the part that he actually cleans,” Erin said wryly with a kind of strange affection. She sounded so much more relaxed now that it seemed certain that Bella was locked in. There was a red door with a piece of notebook paper on it that said in bold letter something in Latin.

Erin opened the door without lock or any kind of key. Bella wasn’t sure whether this inspired trust or fear, but it was too late to go back now. The door swung open slowly, revealing....

Bella’s thoughts struck coldness within her, and she blinked trying to process what she saw.

A basement, a very nerdy teen’s bedroom, a living space, a laboratory, the wide once storage facility was all of that and none of it: the right half of the wall was entirely lined with books on philosophy, anatomy, computer science, and a lot of metaphysical stuff. It was as if every nonfiction book Bella had ever tried to read but put down in favor of Pride and Prejudice was in one room, one bookshelf.

There were at least three computers, none of them fancy, all patch worked with enough cables to power an entire server. In the middle chair she could see the back a head of unkempt black hair.

Erin swept a hand in front of her, and wrinkled her nose, “May I present to you the lair.” She put air quotes around the word ‘lair’ and gave a marked glance to the head.

Bella’s breath whooshed out of her. “What is this?” She turned to face Erin. “Who are you?”

The boy or rather teenager it was hard to tell, swiveled around in his chair completely. Face to face the effect was rather disconcerting, and she understood now both why it had taken so long to meet him and perhaps even why he was under here in the first place.

His eyes were not how eyes were supposed to be. Instead of having definite pupils the irises were white and cloudy like a colloid of blue milk and water. They even bulged out a little, like those googly eyes on joke disguise glasses. Over his blue eyes were glasses so thick that she wondered how they could even help. When she realized she was staring, Bella looked down at the floor, ashamed. People couldn’t help how they were born, or she thought ruefully trying not to imagine his topaz eyes, how they died.

He shifted uncomfortably, and the moment lasted a couple of seconds longer before he said, “I’m Damien and you must be that depressed chick.”

“Damien,” Erin scolded, but she was looking at her feet as well.

“No, it’s alright,” Bella amended quietly. It was true. “So, umm, what is this place?” She motioned around the room her hands moving like little injured bird.

His brow wrinkled slightly, and Bella shied away afraid that for another verbal outburst. He sighed a sad little sigh, but his lips quickly flitted into a smile afterwards. “This is where I live.”

“You live here?” Bella looked around again more carefully; she didn’t even see a bed. She reassessed him, trying not to focus on those disconcerting eyes. At least they were trained on her pretty securely that meant he couldn’t be blind. Bella quirked an eyebrow at him and moved on to Erin. “You do, too?”

She nodded and gave the kind of smile her mother used to give Bella when she was a toddler with too many questions. “That is a whole other story. Don’t you know what we originally had to say, how I got you to come down here in the first place?”

Actually, Bella thought, maybe she didn’t. The feeling of missing him was still gnawing away at her stomach, but at least the pain had become constant. She didn’t know if she could accept any change to it. Now that she had finally fallen off the tight wire she wasn’t sure if she wanted to get up again. She always knew he couldn’t love her, stupid, pathetic little—

And then his voice, sweet like cinnamon and honey, crooning at her, “Bella, I love you... I will not leave you, do try to reign in your paranoia.” She turned to the right, but only a small poster of some old 80’s fantasy movie with a weird looking blonde guy, and a set of action figures stared back at her. Definitely not Edward, she sighed.

“She isn’t going catatonic is she?” Erin whispered aside to Damien.

Bella’s expression was indignant as she turned to look at her “hosts”. “What are you talking about?”

“Damien,” Erin whined, flopping onto a ratty brown futon that Bella now saw could be a bed. “Explain.”

Bella turned to look at Damien who turned off the screen on his computer, so that the room was dark except for the green and red glow of the lava lamps. He sat down in the swiveling chair he had previously and leaned back with a loud groan. “You,” he paused and Bella could see what Erin meant about him liking theatrics, “are addicted to Edward Cullen.”

“Talking about me when I’m not here, how rude,” the velvet voice whispered. Bella refused to turn around, instead closing her eyes. But eventually she noticed that no one was responding, not even her velvet voice. Hesitantly she opened her eyes, and nearly wept in delight.