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A year of trials. A year of suffering. This is the year where Carlisle Cullen makes the most important decision of his four hundred years as a vampire. Does he dare drink human blood for the first time? What does the Volturi want as the mortal world throws itself into war? And what is so special about this young girl wanting to throw herself into that war? This is also a year of questions...


1. Chapter 1 - Decisions

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Carlisle sighed softly. He was surely used to this by now, but there was still that urge, thrusting and pulling on his throat, refusing to let loose.

The sight of the blood was the least of his worries. It was the scent; the hundreds of different sets of blood that went through the hospital each month, all with different injuries, and the same excrutiating thing they all had in common: Carlisle wanted to drink every droplet of the blood.

Get a grip on yourself! he thought. You have been a vampire for four centuries, and a doctor for two! Fucking hell! Leaving his sub-conscience behind him, he trailed the busy corridors, trying with all his might to find an outlet for his thirst.

As he rounded the emergency department, he caught sight of a young girl, at least sixteen, getting carried on a guerney, with multiple leg injuries. It was not the injuries that caught Carlisle's attention, it was the girl.

She appeared to be in no pain. Her face seemed relaxed, apart from the obvious disgust at the attention she was receiving, and had her arms crossed across her chest defensively. Carlisle chuckled.

Walking over, the scent of her blood hitting him like a brick wall, he smiled warmly and picked up her chart. The girl looked at him with a clear sign of dislike. Carlisle looked through her chart, and noticed that she had been in and out of the emergency department since she was three. Now Carlisle understood.

'Not a fan of hospitals, I presume?' Carlisle asked, though he didn't expect an answer. The girl scowled.

'Not a fan of doctors, actually. They treat me like I'm some sort of disease.'

Yep, not a fan at all. Carlisle smiled again.

'Now, why would you think that?' he asked, looking more closely at her chart.

'Well, either you're the most unobservant doctor I've ever met, or you're just playing stupid to annoy me. If it's the latter, I'll - ' She trailed off.

Carlisle looked up. According to the girl's chart, her name was Maria Potts, and she was thought to have some sort of disease that did not allow her to feel pain. With that, unfortunately, she had some major incidents, all of which she did not feel an ounce of pain.