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Everchanging Destiny

Summary:
Bella and Edward continue their relationship as a vampire and a human. This story takes place after Breaking Dawn but not as you would expect it to. There are the usual threats of other vampires trying to get to Bella and ruin the Cullen family.


Notes:


19. Chapter 20: Promises

Rating 5/5   Word Count 4540   Review this Chapter

Chapter 20: Promises

Everything was dark. I heard faint, familiar voices but couldn’t make out what they were saying. Where was I? Why couldn’t I see anything? I tried to open my eyes but my body wasn’t cooperating. It was so cold. Was it possible I was dead? No, I couldn’t be dead. My body wouldn’t be shivering if I was dead would it? A familiar scent was now making it ways through my nose. If my body could function I knew I would be smiling right now. It was the sweet scent of my Edward. I didn’t mind anymore that I couldn’t move or see anything. I could see and smell him so clearly in my mind that I would be ok with being dead if this is what it was like. I was revealing in his beauty when the delicious scent of him suddenly transformed into a foul, putrid odor. It instantaneously overpowered me. My lungs gasped desperately to catch a breath and it was as if the air I sucked in surged to my brain and popped my eyes wide open.

“Bella? Bella Sweetheart, can you hear me?” I looked up and saw my angel. Edward had me cradled in his arms.

“Bella, can you hear us?” Carlisle was right next to us. He put something under my nose that smelled so repugnant I had to shove it away. “Ugh, that is terrible! What is it?” The odor was stuck in my nose. I felt like I was going to gag.

“Smelling salts,” Carlisle replied. “You fainted, Honey.”

“What? I fainted?” Things were still too foggy.

Edward sat me up, still holding me tightly on his lap. “Here, take a drink Bella,” he softly demanded as he handed me a bottle of water. As I took a drink Esme handed Edward a blanket and he had it wrapped around me in seconds. He rubbed my arms on top of the blanket so the friction would warm me up. It was working.

“Wha…What happened Edward?” The fog wouldn’t clear.

“We were talking and you passed out Sweetheart.”

I searched the lump of mush that was my brain and tried to remember. My thoughts were like puzzle pieces floating around that I couldn’t put together.

“What is the last thing you remember Bella?” Edward asked, concern owning his voice.

“I…I don’t know. Everything is blurry.” Why couldn’t I remember what happened?

Carlisle must have detected the panic in my voice. “It’s ok Bella. This is normal when someone faints. Your body is still recovering. Things will start becoming clearer. Just give it a few minutes.”

“Edward, why don’t you take Bella outside and get her some fresh air. Esme and I will fix her something to eat.”

Edward still had me cradled in his arms as he got up to take me outside. “Bella, can you walk or do you want me to carry you?” The foul smell was finally clearing out of my sinuses and his intoxicating scent was taking over.

“I…I think I can walk.”

He gently set me down and my legs wobbled when my feet hit the floor. I undoubtedly would have fallen over if his arms were not grasped tightly around my waist. He escorted me slowly and carefully out to the deck and helped me sit on the lawn bench. Once I was seated he sat down as close to me as he possibly could and adjusted the blanket that was still around me so it was fitted tightly around my shoulders.

“How are you feeling my love?” He said as he grabbed my hand with both of his. His worried look took me by surprise. He was usually somewhat amused when my weak humanness reared its ugly head.

“I’m fine…I think. What happened Edward? Why did I pass out?”

He didn’t respond immediately and I knew by the look on his face he was contemplating something. “Bella, what is the last thing you remember?”

“Well, I remember coming back here after seeing Megan at Peninsula. We…we got in a fight…I talked to Esme…and then I…I came to your room. The next thing I remember is seeing your face when you were holding me on the couch. Did I pass out in your room? Did you bring me downstairs?”

He hesitated again, “Yes Bella. You passed out on my bed and I carried you down to Carlisle.”

“But why would I just pass out like that? Is there something wrong with me?”

“No my love, there’s nothing wrong with you. It was probably due to all the stress with the Megan situation. You were very scared and worried.”

I remembered clearly the confrontation with Megan; her new friends, her threats to me and the whole Cullen family. My heart rate sped up rapidly as I replayed the scene in my mind. “That makes sense I guess,” I replied, still unconvinced. “What are we going to do about that Edward? What are we going to do about Megan?”

“We’re working on it Bella. There is nothing for you to worry about right now. We are still one person stronger than them plus we have the pack looking out for them as well. They won’t get near you I promise.”

“I’m not worried about me Edward; I am worried about you and your family. You know what Megan said she was going to do.”

“Again, there is no need to worry Sweetheart. You know we can take care of ourselves.”

“And you still won’t consider my suggestion about the Volturi?” I had to try. Maybe he had changed his mind.

“You know that’s not an option Bella. Really, there is nothing to worry about. We are all going to be sticking together and watching out for you and Charlie. Everything is going to be fine.”

“But Edward…” I wasn’t able to finish my sentence before his hands cradled my face and his lips were moving tenderly on top of mine. As usual I lost all train of thought.

“What was that for?” I asked breathlessly when he pulled away, too soon as always.

He smiled my favorite crooked smile, “I have learned that there is only one way to stop an impending argument with you. I can always count on your human hormones.”

“Oh really? Well Edward I think you overestimated your ability to dazzle me. Now, back to the Volturi. I really think…”

His lips were back on mine moving more rapidly and passionately then the first time. He picked me up from beside him and moved me to his lap, his lips never leaving mine. Our hands were urgently knotting in each other’s hair when he gently pulled me away from him. He looked at me with his smoldering eyes and lifted his one eye brow, along with the crooked smile. The double whammy, it wasn’t fair.

“Fine…you win…for now,” I resigned.

He quietly laughed and pulled my head into his chest. “I wish I would have figured out this trick earlier in our courtship. It could have saved me a lot of trouble.”

I wanted to reply to his snide remark when the screen door opened and Alice came walking out. “How are you feeling Bella?” She chimed.

“I’m fine Alice; just embarrassed as always.”

“I’m so sorry Bella. When I have my visions sometimes I forget that I shouldn’t just blurt things out when you are around so I don’t scare you.”

“Vision, wha…what vision?” Confusion started to set in again. I turned to look at Edward and caught him nodding his head “no” to Alice, while moving his hands back and forth in front of his throat, as if telling her to “cut it”.

“Edward, what’s going on?” He was obviously keeping something from me.

“Uh…It was nothing Bella,” he replied while looking at Alice.

“Yeah, it was nothing Bella,” Alice interrupted. “I saw Megan confronting us again at…at school and you got really scared and passed out. It wasn’t a big deal really. Nothing bad happened in my vision. No one got hurt. Besides, I can’t even be sure if what I’m seeing is real or not.”

She shot a strange look at Edward before she continued, “Anyway, Esme wanted me to let you know she has some food ready for you. Carlisle said you need to eat something.”

“Yes, you should eat something. You need to build your strength up,” Edward answered. He stood up and reached for my hand. I reluctantly took his hand and he pretended not to notice the suspicious look on my face.

After I ate, which did make me feel a lot better, Edward got ready to drive me home. The rest of the family was going to follow so they could stake out the woods tonight to be sure not only that Charlie and I were safe but that they were safe as well by staying together. Charlie had called Sam before we left to be sure they were patrolling La Push as well. There was definitely something going on they were not telling me about because Carlisle was starting to tell Sam about a vision Alice had when he looked at me then took the phone in the other room to finish the conversation. I was frustrated but decided I would wait until Edward and I were alone in my room to get the truth out of him.

When we got close to the house Edward froze up. It was a look I had seen way too many times. Something was wrong.

“Edward, what is it?”

“Jacob,” he snarled. I looked out the window and Jacob was just about to pass us by going the opposite direction. He drove slowly passed us and laughed. I started to hyperventilate.

“Calm down Sweetheart, breathe,” Edward said calmly as he rubbed the back of his hand on my cheek. “He didn’t tell them anything, he was just dropping Billy off at your house for the game.”

“Then why was he laughing?” I was calmer now that Edward had reassured me nothing happened but still couldn’t help being nervous.

“To aggravate and scare us. He is really enjoying his mind games. I wish you would allow me to go wipe that smirk off of his face.”

“If he keeps this up I just may let you,” I replied sarcastically.

“Please don’t tease me Bella, it isn’t nice,” he smirked.

Edward didn’t come in with me. He assured me he would be up in my room shortly. He wanted to check in with the rest of the family one more time before we retired for the evening.

When I got in Charlie and Billy were eating pizza and were both in a seemingly good mood. The game must have been going their way.

I sat with them and watched the game for a little while to be polite. Things got awkward when Charlie excused himself to go make a beer run leaving me alone with Billy. I knew he knew what had been going on with Jacob and was nervous about the conversation that was certainly about to take place.

I was about to speak first when I heard the tapping on the front door. My first thought was it was Jacob coming back and my heart started racing.

“I’ll be right back Billy,” I said as I headed towards the door, my heart pounding so hard it felt like my rib cage was rattling.

I opened the door and was immediately relieved when I saw Edward standing there. “You forgot your notebook in the car. I thought you might need it to study tonight,” he said with a smile and a wink.

He leaned over to kiss me on the cheek and whispered, “I saw Charlie leave and thought you might like some backup.”

I wrapped my arms around his neck, “thank you, thank you, thank you.”

“My pleasure my love,” he smiled and caressed my cheek with his fingers. “And don’t worry; Emmett and Jasper are following Charlie to the store. He will be safe.”

I shook my head back and forth smiling in disbelief. It was always amazing to me how he took such good care of me. He was always there when I needed him, no matter what the circumstance.

He took my hand and we walked back into the living room.

“Hello Billy,” Edward said in his most polite voice.

“Edward,” Billy nodded.

“So how is everything down at La Push Billy?” My voice cracked nervously.

“Don’t you mean how is Jacob doing?” Billy replied, seeing right through me.

I nodded. There was no sense in trying to pussyfoot around.

“Well, he is still very angry Bella. I don’t ever recall seeing him like this. You sure did a number on him.”

“A number on him!” I shrieked. “What do mean I did a number on him?” I’d never shouted at Billy before. I immediately regretted how disrespectful I was being.

“I…I’m sorry Billy. I don’t know where that came from.”

“It’s ok Bella; I shouldn’t have said it like that. I know you didn’t intentionally hurt Jacob but that doesn’t change the fact that you did.”

“I don’t know what to do Billy. I know I hurt him but I don’t know how to fix it.” I could feel the tears welling up.

“I don’t know either Bella. Right now Jacob isn’t listening to reason, not even from me or Sam. While I don’t approve of the way he is going about things, I can’t really fault him for feeling the way he does. He loves you and is worried about you. I feel the same. You have always been like a daughter to me, ever since you were young. Charlie is my best friend, my brother, and I hate knowing what you are planning on doing. It will kill him when he finds out and I promise you Bella, he will find out. Maybe not right away but do you think you can hide it from him once you become one of them? Even if you run away Charlie will never stop looking for you. You have to know that.”

I looked at Edward who just sat there not saying a word. So much for him rescuing me from the awkward situation.

“So…Jacob told you about my…my plans?” I couldn’t believe that Billy knew. I felt sick.

“No, Sam told me actually. You know that whatever Jacob knows the rest of the pack knows.”

“Of course,” I murmured below my breathe wishing desperately I hadn’t told Jacob my secret.

“Billy, please promise me you won’t tell Charlie. You have to believe me that I have my reasons for doing this.”

“I wish I could tell Charlie Bella, to save you, but I can’t. I can’t let our secret out anymore than you can let yours out.”

Billy turned towards Edward who just sat there staring at his lap with a pained expression on his face.

“Edward, you and your family always seemed like sensible, well… people… for lack of a better word, to me. I can’t believe that you would even think about doing this to Bella, taking her away from her family and friends that love her.”

“Now wait a minute Billy,” I interrupted. “This was my decision, not theirs. Believe me, they fought me on it. There are just a lot of extenuating circumstances that you are not aware of.”

The front door slammed shut and Charlie came running into the living room handing Billy a Vitamin R. “What did I miss? Did anyone score?” He threw his coat on the couch and popped open his beer.

“No, you didn’t miss anything,” Billy said while giving me a disapproving look. “Edward and Bella were just catching me up on their schooling.”

Charlie looked over at the chair Edward was sitting in. “Oh, hey Edward! Sorry, I didn’t even notice you there.”

“No problem Charlie,” Edward responded with no emotion in his voice. “I have to be going actually. I have some homework to do.”

“Ok, well, have a good night,” Charlie said half-heartedly, not taking his eyes off the flat screen.

I jumped off of my chair way too anxious to get out of the room. “I’ll walk you out Edward. Actually Dad I have some homework to finish up as well so I am going to head upstairs. It was good to see you Billy.”

“It was good to see you too Bella,” Billy replied with the still disapproving look on his face.

“Ok, see ya later Bells,” Charlie chimed in, his eyes still glued to the TV.

“So, I’ll see you upstairs?” I asked Edward as we got to the door.

“Yes, you will see me upstairs Bella,” he answered, still not showing any emotion.

I grabbed an apple and a Coke from the fridge before heading up to my room. I walked slowly trying to think of what I could say to him to make him feel better. I know he was stewing in what Billy had said about him taking me away from my family and friends.

As promised Edward was waiting for me on my bed. He didn’t look up at me when I walked in.

“Well, that was an awkward situation. Thanks for coming back to help me out,” I said casually.

No response.

“You know, you could have jumped in there and said something. You could have helped me convince him what the real story was, why this has to happen.”

He finally looked up at me, “Bella, it seemed to me that he already had the real story. I will be taking you away from your family. I will be ending your life. And there isn’t anything I could have said as to why this has to happen because it honestly doesn’t have to happen.”

“Ugh!” I screamed a little too loud. Luckily Charlie had the TV turned up so loud that it drowned out my outburst. “I am not having this same old fight again.”

I jumped on the bed and straddled myself over his legs. “Why don’t you try out your argument winning strategy again?” I asked in my pathetic attempt to sound sexy.

“I don’t think so Bella. I wouldn’t actually mind having this argument again. Maybe this time you will finally hear me.”

I sighed and got off of his legs and sat down next to him. I could see his mood was not going to end anytime soon. “Well, I’m not going to argue about this again no matter how much you want to. But I do have something else I want to talk to you about.”

“Shoot,” he replied, unenthusiastically.

“I want to know what really happened today. I know you and Alice were lying to me about her vision. Neither one of you are very good at not telling the truth. Besides, I saw you trying to cut her off when she was talking and I also noticed that Carlisle walked out of the room when he was talking to Sam and saw me watching him.”

He shook his head with a quiet little laugh, “You know I hate it sometimes that you are so observant. It can be really annoying.”

“So? Spill it. What really happened Edward.”

“OK, I will tell you but you have to promise me you won’t freak out and pass out on me again. As amusing as your human emotions are it scares me more than you will ever know when something like that happens to you. And remember, Alice’s visions can and usually do change at some point.”

“I don’t pass out on purpose Edward so I can’t promise you I won’t but I will promise you I will try my best.”

“Fair enough I guess,” he sighed as he started to tell me what happened after we left his room.

I started to remember little by little as he told me the play by play of the conversation downstairs at the Cullen’s. I remembered Alice staring blankly at the wall and the look of horror on her face. Then before Edward could get to those final words Alice said before I lost consciousness, I remembered:

“I saw us die. All of us.”

“You remember.” Edward stated, obviously figuring it out by the frightened look I must have had on my face.

“Yes, I remember,” my voice was no more than a whisper.

“Are you ok Bella? Do you feel faint? Sick?” He was sitting up close to me now, running his chilled hands up and down my face hoping the cold would keep me conscious.

“Yeah, I’m ok.” I took a minute to try to gain my composure before I started asking the millions of questions I had.

He pulled my face to his and kissed me. “Remember Bella, Alice’s visions are subjective and can change. This one will change I promise you.”

My composure seemed to be back. “Edward, what exactly did Alice see? I mean how does it happen? When? Do we all die together? Separately?”

“Bella, Bella…don’t worry about it Sweetheart. The details don’t matter because it isn’t going to happen.”

“Please Edward; I want…I need to know. This is my life too we are talking about. I have a right to know what she saw.”

“Ugh. Why are you always such a stubborn girl? Why can’t you just trust me that knowing what she saw isn’t going to do you any good? All it will do is make you anxious.”

“Please Edward, just tell me. I can handle it, I promise.”

“Fine Bella, I will tell you even though it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t mean anything.”

He sighed heavily and continued, “We are all in the woods behind your house when they show up. There are more of them now, 13 to be exact. We don’t know who the others are that are with them but they aren’t newborns. They are smart. We are all blind because Megan is throwing false images at us. Esme is the first one that they get.”

I felt my chest getting tighter and tighter and finding it hard to breathe. Edward noticed.

“That’s it. I’m not going any further. It doesn’t matter anyway, it isn’t going to happen.”

I focused hard on to regulate my breathing. I needed to know the rest.

“I’m alright Edward. Please go on. You’re right, it probably won’t even happen; I just need to know.”

He looked at me hesitantly before he continued, “Well, after Esme they get Jasper, then Rosalie. At this point Sam, Brady, Quill, Embry, Seth and Collen show up. We are able to hold them off for a while with the wolves’ help and even manage to wipe half of them out but it doesn’t matter. Seth, Sam and Embry are the next to go followed by Carlisle, Quill and Collen. Alice and Emmett are the last ones standing but they go down as well.”

I was trying not to envision the scene in my mind but it was useless. I kept picturing everyone I love being ripped about and burned, ending them. It took me a minute to realize I hadn’t heard my name or Edward’s for that matter. It didn’t surprise me Jacob wasn’t mentioned. After all, he wanted the Cullens gone probably more than Megan did.

“Bella, what are you thinking? Please don’t be anxious. We won’t let this happen.” He touched my face again and the chill brought me out of my thoughts.

“Edward, what about you?” I didn’t care what happened to me. I needed to know what happened to him. Megan said she didn’t want to kill Edward, just everyone he loved. I needed to know he was going to be OK.

“Well, up to that point I’m not fighting. I am standing back, protecting you. They didn’t come after me because Megan wanted me to see everyone getting killed. She knew I wouldn’t leave you to go help them so they left me alone up until this point.”

Up until this point? It was getting harder and harder to control my heart rate and breathing.

“Then what?” I somehow managed to whisper.

“Please Bella, don’t make me go on. I’m begging you.” I could see the suffering in his face, his eyes. I could hear it in his voice.

“Tell me Edward,” I insisted.

“When everyone else is gone, two of the remaining four of them bring Charlie out. They…well; he suffers the same fate as the rest. When they have him taken care of they come after you. I fight as hard as I can and manage to take out one more of them but two of them restrain me and I can’t break free.”

His face was more pained than I had ever seen it before. He struggled to get the rest of the words out. “Megan, she…she takes care of you personally. I try and try but can’t break free. After you are gone, they let me go but I keep fighting, but not really trying. I want them to kill me and they do.”

When he finished he looked exhausted, like a human would look after running a marathon. I don’t remember ever seeing Edward look tired. I should have probably broke down in tears or passed out again but I was too angry from his last words.

“Edward, what did you mean by you want them to kill you?” My teeth were grinding through my clenched jaw.

“Bella, I have told you over and over again, I will not live in a world without you in it. You were dead, I didn’t have a choice.”

I was beyond angry now. Angry that these horrible parasites would kill everyone I loved but even more so that Edward has a chance to live, and doesn’t take it.

“Edward, you cannot do this. You cannot give up your existence just because something happened to me. I won’t allow it! This world needs you in it, if it is only to keep others safe from scum like Megan.”

“Bella, this whole conversation is pointless. I won’t continue to be a part of it. This scenario will never come to fruition.”

“Even if this particular situation doesn’t happen, I demand that you promise me you won’t give up your life if something happens to me Edward. I mean it. I want your word.”

“Ok, Bella,” he answered, just as angry as I was now. “I will promise you I will not give up my life for you if you promise me you won’t give up your life for me, your human life.”

I was shell shocked that he would play that card. “Be serious Edward, it isn’t the same thing and you know it.”

“I know of no such thing Bella. If you want me to promise, you have to promise as well. I will agree to walk around this world miserable for eternity if you agree not to die and stay human. It’s your choice.”

I hated ultimatums and Edward was the king of them. I thought about it for a minute until the light bulb finally clicked on in my head. This is a promise I could make. Alice’s vision would more than likely come true and it wouldn’t matter if I was turned or not. I would already be dead, and soon. Edward would undoubtedly keep his promise because that was the kind of honorable man he was.

“Alright Edward, I promise. Now it’s your turn.”

“You promise what?” He quickly replied with the one eyebrow raise.

“I promise I won’t make you or anyone in your family turn me into a vampire if you promise after I die you won’t kill yourself.”

He eyed me suspiciously as he should have. I was extremely happy he couldn’t hear my thoughts right now.

“Hmm…Ok, I promise I won’t kill myself if something should happen to you, which it won’t by the way.”

“We have a deal then?”

“Yes, Bella, we have deal.”