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Afterglow

Summary:
The in canon tale of the daughter Rose never thought she could have. When my mother found me, fate seemed to link us together. Not only was I the daughter she never dreamed she'd have, I was unusually unappetizing for a human. However, being raised by vampires does not come without conflict. This is my tale about growing up Cullen and finding love in the most unexpected place. The world's largest coven is about to get a whole lot larger!


Notes:
Sorrowfully, I do not own the Twilight saga or any of its characters. They belong to the glorious Stephenie Meyer. But Emmalie is MINE, as is the plot. :)


10. Danger

Rating 3.8/5   Word Count 3511   Review this Chapter

The girl sure knew how to cut travel time in half. She was a speed demon, the kind you see being trailed by a dozen cops on the Breaking News reports. When the Seattle skyline appeared, my knuckles were white from being jammed into nervous fists.

When we were first leaving Forks, I explained how Ness decided to not come because she would rather play Scrabble with Jake at some 104 year old's birthday. Jake playing scrabble was a little far-fetched, but the idea was fresh in my head, compliments of Mr. and Mrs. Dull.

She had to know it was a big fat lie, but I just wanted Ness to have her night out. Plus, my gut feeling told me that Ness was not going to like the fact that I had involved Alice in things. Alice, who could barely keep a secret to save her soul! If I played this out right, neither of them would know about the other. And Leah, well, she would deal.

After several stoplights and bouts of congested traffic, Alice pulled up to Club Trinity in the heart of busy Seattle. Glancing at me nervously, she turned off the car. I could tell she was wondering what she had gotten herself into. Outside, I could see Leah holding our spot in the long line hopeful clubbers; the street was packed. The music seeping out from the club was already making my head buzz.

And then Alice zoned on me, her hands glued to the steering wheel, her eyes fixed ahead, most likely trying to envision if my parents were going to kill her for bringing me here. A needless worry Alice, I thought to myself. What they don't know won't kill you! That's tonight philosophy.

"Alice! We can get out. Ziggy will park the car," I said, prying the keys from her little hand and sliding out the passenger door. I tossed them to the usual brash Valet parker. Alice emerged, slamming her door, then stomping around to the curb to stand beside me.

"You know the car-hop's name? How many times have you been here, young lady," she demanded, her voice hushed but stinging like a whip. I shrugged, then pulled a twenty from the wad of money I had in my clutch and handed it to Ziggy. Being his usual creepy self, he took the money, but not before kissing my hand. Alice shivered in disgust and then brandished a finger at the young, buff male.

"If there is so much as a bird dropping upon my car, I will make your childhood nightmares look like the parade that goes through Disneyworld everyday at noon! Got it, buster?" she challenged, poking him with a few more twenties. He put his hands in the air as if she was threatening to shoot.

She had no idea how silly she looked, a four-foot-something teenage girl bullying a husky, ex-gang member.

When she realized she might have over reacted, she tucked the twenties into his front pocket and patted his shoulder, granting him a remorseful half-smile. She then, tossed her Prada tote over her shoulder and stomped to the sidewalk, her little hips swaying in her tight designer jeans. I could not help but chuckle as Ziggy pasted his eyes to her ass and purred. For such a small person, she had a whole lot of spirit.

She, of course, walked to the front of the line. I smiled and scurried as fast as my heels permitted. Leah met us up front, as always dress to kill. It was a ‘no effort-no entry' type of club. That was her only reason for dolling up - or so she said.

Leah glared and mouthed, "What the Hell is she doing here?!"

Alice did not look to happy to see Leah either. Though at the same time, she looked pleasantly surprised by Leah's outfit. As Alice appraised her clothes, Leah looked at her with unadulterated revulsion.

Ignoring them, I smiled coyly at Marq, the head doorman - the man with the list. He smiled back and planted a kiss on my cheek.

"Miss Vivian Gray, aren't you a sight for sore eyes. When JP put your name on the list, I didn't believe it. It's been so long, I thought they might've thrown you in the lock," he said jokingly.

"They still might," said my aunt, the fake smile not fully masking her annoyance. Apparently, she was not very amused with my acquaintances. Marq quickly eyed her over and smiled wickedly, too wickedly.

"My... sister Alice," I supplied, keeping the introduction short, praying she would keep her mouth shut. She stood there, the little imp she was, and scowled. The vampire vibes were screaming do not mess with me human, and luckily Marq read the vibes correctly, because he stopped eyeing her up.

"Alight, ladies, get in there," he said, ushering us passed the door. "And behave yourselves!" came Leah's usual warning followed by his raspy smoker's laugh. Alice stalked so fast into the crowded building it was hard to keep up.

Before entering the main room, we were frisked for guns and ID'd. I, of course, was branded "Under 21." Since Alice entered before us, I didn't think she saw.

"I did not realize it was ‘bring your vamp-aunt night' at Trinity! But that has to be the reason you brought her. Or is there another excuse?" she spit as the security man ran a wand over her.

"Listen, I didn't have many options; she knew something was up," I explained in a whisper. I could tell Leah wanted to nag me further, but the crowd crammed on Seattle's biggest dance floor distracted us both. The sound-system sent my heart fluttering in my chest and my adrenaline kicked it to full throttle. Tonight was a good night to come.

I found Alice through the doors. She was eyeing the ornately, flirtatious decor of the two tiered room with disgust. She looked back to me and Leah. A room full of sweaty dancers was apparently not her thing, no matter how classy the place was.

I could tell she was ticked. Maybe, I should have prepared her a little better.

"Let's find places to sit for a bit and then, if you're still among the living, you can do whatever else it is you do here," she said with a little growl.

At this point, I was totally regretting bringing her. I sullenly lead her up to the balcony that over looked the main room. We selected a sleek black table in a secluded corner and sat. I could tell Leah was totally thinking I had ruined it for myself, and I could not help but feel the same. Alice just sighed, sensing she was unwelcome company.

"You're not even sixteen. How does a person like you get into a place like this?" she mused aloud, wrinkling her nose at the human odor scenting the packed room. She searched Leah and me for an explanation, but we provided none. In fact, I could not help but look at the dance floor below, ignoring Alice completely. After a moment, Leah nudged me under the table and I looked up to see Alice's wide eyes gazing into the future.

Shoot, she knows, I thought to myself. I was sure she had not seen me flash it on the way in. But now, all hopes of keeping it had vanished. I had not thought this out at all. Alice was being anything but cool about things.

"Fake ID in my hand now," she demanded, putting her hand face-up on the table. I unlatched the clutch purse and reluctantly dropped my key to freedom into her little marble hand. She looked at it, then raised her inky black eyebrows, an amused look on her face.

She then broke into energetic laughter. Leah and I exchanged a few nervous glances at the polar change in attitudes.

"It looks like you, Emm," she said between little giggles. I smiled, glad that she was no longer going to slaughter me in the public eye. Her face turned back to its normal, peaceful look and I relaxed even more. "Ohhh, Emm, you need to get a better guy to do your work. I mean, it does look authentic. It's just that you are a far cry from 18. Who did it by the way? He should be shot for trying to play you off as an adult!"

I looked at her uneasily.

Ughhh, YOUR guy did it, Alice. Ness found his number and he did it for free. ‘A family favor' he called it, I retorted brazenly, but only in my head.

In actuality, I held my tongue and let the awkward silence linger on. The tension was too much for Leah. She got up and picked a tequila shot off a passing tray, resorting to what she did best.

Just then, I jumped in surprise when I saw Nessie coming towards us. Her perfect, lush, bronze ringlets bounced as she bounded up the stairs. She could have been on a hair commercial. She had on Jake's leather jacket, a white tee and some tightly fitted jeans. Her helmet was tucked under her one arm.

Oh, shit! I thought to myself.

Her eyes had that love stuck gaze they got when she had spent time with lover boy. She was smiling at me, obviously not recognizing the back of Alice's head. She looked relieved, but not relieved enough to leave without telling me off.

"Hey, Emm, what's the deal! You worry me when you just leave a message and disappear like that. Jake and I have reservations, but I just had to check on y...." she stopped, her voice dropping off as she saw Alice.

The smile retracted and she looked to me, then to my captured ID.

Alice sat perfectly still for a moment, bending the card until it cracked. Then she turned her golden eyes to both of us. I knew what Ness and I were waiting for, for that silver phone to flip up to her ear and our screaming parents to come home to kill us personally.

We were so dead; the fake ID was a big deal. The bike was a big deal. Ness being here, in Seattle, without permission was a big deal.

"For some reason, I thought you were playing Scrabble at some old lady's birthday," she said, glaring at me. Ness looked a cross between caught and confused. "And do not even think about trying to tell me you're not with him, on that BIKE. Ness, what would your parents say?"

She did not have an answer and I was equally speechless.

"And this," Alice continued, sprinkling the broken pieces of my ID in the middle of the table. She did not have to ask where it came from she could already hear the answer in one of her visions. "Jenks' services are to be used strictly for extreme circumstances. Not to get your cousin into clubs! What would your father think and Rose.....she would have a fit if she knew!"

Nessie's eyes squinted in anger. It was easy to see who she was blaming for our being found out. While she scowled accusingly at me, I tried fending off her anger with a set of remorseful looks. I should have known better than to confide in Alice and bring her into this. Somehow, I thought she would take it better, that she would be impressed with how adult-like we were.

I was very wrong. Alice was just as protective as the rest of them. I was so certain she would break her promise and turn us in. But then her face lightened, as if stirred by some great idea.

"So you guys are going to have to buy me off. Start the offers," Alice said, hardening her pixie features and tapping her fingers impatiently. Of course we would resort to bribes; it was the Cullen way, I remembered.

"We will go shopping with you every Friday for a year," Nessie put forward in a panic. I nodded and added on.

"...you'll know the truth from now on! And...and you can drag us to Milan with you in the spring and we'll not even complain!"

"I'll let you toss out my old jeans!" Ness offered. "And, I'll not tell Carlisle about your pointless QVC purchases!"

Alice immediately frowned.

"The last part was blackmail and therefore does not count. The rest I accept, on the condition that Emma stated, I at least know where you are," she said, nodding her head and smiling. We nodded and breathed a sigh of relief, glad that she had decided not to tell our parents. Then Nessie got up and wrapped Alice in a warm hug, whispering a thank you into her ear.

Then she stood up and glanced at the door. It was like a gravitational force was beckoning her body to return to him.

"I got to go! Jake thinks I'm still in the restroom at the Italian restaurant down the street," she explained, kissing us each on the cheek. "Oh and you'll be so proud of me Emma, I tried pasta and did not spit it out," she announced proudly, before turning toward the stairs.

"You can have your fun with Jake, but when I leave Seattle tonight, you're going to be in the car. I'll call and pick you up, but you'll have to turn on your phone Ness. We bought it for you for a reason," Alice scolded lightly. I laughed as I watched her gracefully descend down the stairs and begin weaving her way to the back door.

With the room bustling with noise, it was only by her half-vampire hearing that she heard Alice and lipped a belligerent "OK." I smiled as she slipped out of the door.

"Let's hit the floor," suggested Leah, a smirk on her tequila coated lips. Alice nodded, somewhat less perturbed than she had been previously.

And dance we did. This was what I liked to do the most, dance until my ribs burned from breathing so hard. I could have danced like this every day for the rest of my life. Leah of course would slip away for a drink, but other than that we pretty much danced.

My graceful, little aunt may have been born in the early nineteen hundreds, but years of MTV served as a great dance curriculum. She was a sexy little beast and I couldn't help but enjoy this side of her.

After we had danced in the tightly packed space for an hour or so, I tapped Leah on the shoulder and told her I was going to freshen up. I weaved my way through the crowd to the restrooms. But upon finding a daunting line, I changed my plans and made a V-line to the bar.

"Can I get a glass of water?" I asked politely to the tall and attractive bartender. He looked really uncomfortable behind the elaborate bar, corned and caged almost. Maybe it was his first night or something, but my simple request made him grin willingly. He poured water in an exceedingly chilled glass, and had it in my hand faster than one would expect. The glass was so cold that my hand caused it to fog. He stood and watched me as I brought the glass to my lips, staring as if it were a novel idea.

Hadn't he seen a girl drink water before? I thought to myself.

I eyed him suspiciously, then quickly swigged it down to avoid having his eyes boring into me while I drank. "Umm, thanks," I said quickly, turning to flee to the once daunting line. He looked as if he was not expecting me to leave so soon.

Was he really thinking that after he eye-raped me, I was going to stand there and talk small talk with him? I mean he was attractive, but not so attractive that his gawking was forgivable. Men can be so creepy, I thought to myself, as I shivered from the unwanted attention.

I found the restroom overly stuffy and I sensed claustrophobia taking over.

I slipped out into the main room hoping to find it better, but instead I felt faint and my head felt light. The booming sound system became muffled and my skin felt clammy to the touch. I had blacked out enough times in the past that I knew this was not a normal fainting spell.

Alice. I needed to find Alice, I thought to myself, my eyes scoping out the blurred faces of strangers.

My whole body felt like lead, my lower-half felt like I had been trudging through quicksand. I mean, I had never been in quicksand, but this had to be what it felt like. Something was wrong. I was not just going to faint, this was a completely different feeling.

Then, my knees buckled and my wooziness became crushing. Before I could sit down, blackness engulfed me, surrounding me from all sides.

The cold wood floor made a brutally hard bed, but unconscious as I was, I did not care. My breathing was staggered and my body felt lifeless, dead almost.

Then, somewhere far off I could make out muted yelling. I felt warm hands, whose I didn't know. If I would have had the power I would have been worried. My eyes were too heavy to open and my mind was cloudy. All I knew were hands and strange voices, urging me to wake.

Then I recognized the pair of chilly hands and Alice's lilting voice.

The next thing I remember was the hum of the Porsche and a screech of tires.

I pried open my eyes and realized I was lying down in the back seat. Alice was on the phone, talking too fast for me to make out the words. Who she was talking to, I could not tell: my parents, Papa Car, probably all of them. If my Mia and Popeye were still in Vancouver, they would hop a flight and be home in a heartbeat.

I let my heavy eyes flutter shut; I had no control over the situation now. My muscles were like lifeless sludge. I had not even the energy to protest.

My next conscious memory was my Popeye's voice. He was angry. No. He was furious, and poor Alice was trying to calm him down.

We were beneath an awning, the bright, unnatural, white-lights giving the false sense of daylight. It was familiar, as if I had been here in a dream or in another life. It took me a moment to recognize it as the emergency drop off at Papa Car's hospital in Sequim. That was a good six hours away from where we had been. It did not feel like six hours had passed, maybe six minutes, but not six hours.

I was still laying in the backseat, the leather sticking to my fevered skin. As much as I wanted to sit up, I could not pull my strength and courage together enough to do anything more than lay there. I felt cowardly letting Alice take the brunt of my Popeye's anger.

"Why is she dressed like a harlot, Alice? I thought you agreed to watch her, not assist her in crime. Damn it, I could crush your tiny skull I'm so pissed," he screamed and cursed and pounded his fist together. She whimpered some inaudible defense. I sat up fighting the dizziness and opened the door putting my feet over the side, swaying slightly.

"Popeye, it's not her fault. It's mine," I pleaded in a near whisper, too pained to raise my voice.

"You're damn straight it's your fault. What were you thinking, Emm!" he yelled at me. I noticed that Aunt Alice was now being comforted in my Uncle Jasper's arms and my Mia was running out of the hospital door pulling Papa Car alongside her.

He saw me and pushed past his irritated son and scooped me in his hard arms.

In that moment, I felt safe. I knew that he could make everything better and I trusted him to do so. My head was full of thoughts as I drifted in and out of consciousness.

What was I thinking? I had the best family a girl could ask for. I wanted for nothing and here I was, sneaking out just for kicks. Just because I was determined to live and live it up. I didn't even know why I was doing it. If it was to prove I was not letting my illness control me, it was so not worth it.

For two days I found refuge in ‘sleep.' I didn't want to face them. I just wanted to hide under those white hospital sheets, forever asleep. It didn't help that every time I felt I had strength enough to look around, my Mia's sorrowful face met me. And like a spineless fool, each time, I closed my eyes again.