Jacob has always been willing to do anything for Bella. Now Bella is willing to let him do anything for her. Edward is a little more convincing, Jacob a little more usable, and Bella just a little more vindictive. “He left me! No, no, no! How could he do this? How could he leave me? No, no, he can’t leave me! He left me!” she sobbed. “He left me!” Bella choked, caught her breath. Raised her head, eyes glittering. HE LEFT ME.
7. Chapter 7
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Fear and adrenaline surged through me as I watched my brothers and sister combust into slavering wolves, intent on their target. Whether that concern was more for my father or more for Bella, I wasn’t sure, and that added grief to the lot. I think that maybe it was this emotional overload that had allowed me to keep my own form so easily, without even a thought.
I had felt the air charge with Sam’s command, only able to resist because I was still human, but I still felt the tug low in my belly. I looked to him, but he only nodded before heading outside after the others, freeing me to stay. Turning to Bella, I tried to gauge her reaction, but she only looked on with a cool indifference.
“You… seem to have taken that well,” Billy commented, watching her as closely as I did.
“You aren’t the first monsters I’ve met,” she replied.
That stung. I looked at her, hurt, but she turned to me and a smile suddenly broke over her face.
“Billy, may I speak with Jacob alone?” she asked, still looking at me. “Just for a minute?”
“Well… yes, I suppose.”
She did not stir, and Billy seemed to take this as a hint that she wasn’t considering moving. He backed his wheelchair away from the table and turned it to the door. None of the others had given signs of moving, so he motioned for them to leave. Grumbling, they rose and ducked through the door.
“Holler when you’re done talking,” Billy said over his shoulder.
He seemed to be trying to send me some sort of message with his eyes, but I wasn’t getting it. But if it had anything to do with encouraging Bella to give up the Cullens, I didn’t need any prodding. I would cheerfully tear Edward to pieces myself the next time I saw him because of what he had done.
Her question drew my attention back to her. She had angled her chair and was leaning over to rest against my side. I was stunned, she was snuggling with me! Not that I wasn’t happy about it.
“Bella, you’re freezing,” I said, not only as an excuse to drape my arm over her shoulder.
“Yes,” She replied simply.
It was quiet for a few minutes before she spoke again.
“Jake? You’re supposed to be the alpha aren’t you?”
I was quiet a minute. “Yes,” I answered. “You really listened that day at the beach didn’t you?”
She murmured something, but I didn’t quite hear.
“By blood I should be the next alpha. Sam offered, when I changed, but I could tell he… didn’t really mean it. But I got it, you know. He was the first, he deserves it. More than that, he’s the one that helped us all through it, got us organized, made us into a pack. We’re… we’re like an army, kind of. He got all his troops in a row, with his general, his lieutenant, his sergeant. We’d have to start all over if I became alpha.”
I was quiet for another minute. “Plus, I’m not sure I really want it. The responsibility of everyone else. I want…”
I broke off. I couldn’t finish, not here, with her broken and me wrapped around her trying to keep her from falling apart.
“What do you want Jacob?” she whispered.
I looked down at her and her eyes were shining up at me and my gaze dropped to her lips. I was stuck for only seconds, thinking about how pink and soft they were, before she reached up and placed a gentle kiss on my mouth.
Again, stunned. I couldn’t think, couldn’t breathe, could only feel her mouth as it moved on mine.
“Would you do something for me Jake?” she whispered against my lips.
“Anything,” I mumbled, my brain still lingering in all the places we were touching, and one most pointedly that we were not.
Dazed, I pulled away.
“Please,” she whispered, her eyes glazed and her lips reddened from kissing. “Please, for me.”
And then I said the words I never thought I’d say.