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The Change

Despite Edward, Bella is changed.

DEDICATED to Jess, because she is awesome! Beta'd by the lovely and fabulous Jess.

1. Chapter 1

Rating 5/5   Word Count 1538   Review this Chapter

Bella had spent three days withering and screaming in pain for him. There were times in the midst of the agony that she couldn’t scream; it was like the venom was squeezing her vocal cords, preventing her from making a sound. The torture hadn’t impaired her senses; she saw his topaz eyes looking at her, clouded with the agony of his worry and concern. And guilt. She knew he felt guilty for allowing her to be turned.

For her nineteenth birthday she only asked for one thing: to be turned and given the gift of immortality. Alice had been eager to fulfill her wish, but Carlisle had asked her to wait. Edward had promised Bella that he would do it.

The pain in his eyes as he bit her and right before nearly made her take back her request, but she refused to, she couldn’t take it back. She wanted this more than anything. The fire washed over her immediately as the venom began to infuse her bloodstream. Her blood boiled as her muscles flamed in a fiery torture. Edward left her then, unable to watch the pain he was causing her. He had told her he wasn’t worth it, but she was determined to follow her heart.

“I love you, Edward,” she whispered through the screams that were tearing at her throat.

,br>He loitered by the door, making sure nothing went wrong, but he never approached her during her change. Alice had tended to her, keeping her company and talking to her. Her friendly and familiar voice had reminded Bella that she wasn’t going insane. The pain would wreak havoc on her body, but her mind was firmly intact. The other Cullens didn’t bother her as if they were afraid she’d ask them to save her from her chosen fate. They knew it hurt, but they wanted her to be one of them.

When the pain began to recede Bella took deep breaths and took inventory of her body. She was the same in every way. The blood in her body didn’t seemed to be gone totally, instead her muscles felt heavy with the weight. Her heart kept beating, but she knew, instinctively, that it was merely an old habit that her body would soon forget.

“Bella,” Alice breathed at her side.

Slowly she turned to look at her friend with a pixie body and spiky black hair. “Alice, there’s no more pain,” she whispered, her voice sounding scared to her own ears.

“Bella, you’re beautiful,” Alice told her, pushing some of Bella’s hair from her forehead. Then she laughed. “Not that you weren’t before… I just mean—“

“No,” Bella cut her off gently with a smile. “I knew what you meant.”

Her friend turned toward the door and Bella followed. Edward was standing just inside the doorway, looking like a god in his beautiful statuesque physique. She smiled weakly at him, hoping for one in return. He scowled. She noticed that his eyes were black with hunger.

“Edward,” she whispered, “Edward, say something.”

Edward met her gaze and held it in silence. She wondered how different she looked, and couldn’t decide if he felt differently about her now. The intensity of the stillness must have made Alice uncomfortable because she slipped out, sliding behind Edward after casting him a dark look.

Bella felt tears gathering in her eyes and her throat close. The rejection she felt squeezed her heart, making her feel like she couldn’t breathe.

“Bella,” Edward finally whispered low. His voice was a welcome change from the silence that her felt suffocating. The one word seemed to say so much to her.

The rejection faded and she felt relief flood through her entire body. “Edward…”

He didn’t respond. In his lightening fast vampire speed, he crossed the room. Not a even a second later she was wrapped in his crushing embrace. Only it wasn’t crushing any longer. His body was still as hard as granite and ice cold, but his strength didn’t threaten to devour her. She rested her face in his shoulder and breathed in his scent. It was overpowering and heady, the same smell he was before, but it was intensified.

“Bella,” he said in her ear. His voice was calm but filled with love. “I love you so much.”

She allowed the tears in eyes to fall, but for another reason than the one that had gathered them. She felt an acceptance that she was dreading he wouldn’t give her. He still loved her though blood was no longer running through her veins. He still loved her though she chosen her own destiny. A destiny where she was with him always.

“Edward, I love you, too.” She pulled out of his hug, surprised by her own physical strength to do so. She smiled at his surprised expression. She looked into his honey eyes and felt her dazzling her once again. It was strange. She had always thought that his dazzling power would no longer affect her when she was a vampire too. Her intense feelings for him hadn’t changed because she had been turned. The love they shared still overwhelmed her with its force. Now, with one look at his face she could tell it was the same for her.

His smile was gentle as he looked at her. “Bella, tell me you don’t regret this.”

She smiled back completely certain in her answer. “I’ll never regret this.” She leaned over and brushed her lips against his. The brief contact sent a spiraling pleasure through her body. Slipping her arms around his neck, she brought his mouth to hers again.

The kiss was carnal. She opened her mouth under his, and for the first time, he didn’t pull away from her advances. Slanting their mouths over each other’s again and again, they pressed their bodies to each other, his weight and hard form no longer threatening to hurt her.

He pulled away after a few minutes and looked down into her eyes. “You’re hungry.”

His random statement jarred her for a moment, and then she realized he was right. It was an intense hunger and she couldn’t understand why she hadn’t noticed it before. She nodded.

“I’ll teach you to hunt,” he said, moving off her.

She felt herself wanting his cold, hard body back more than she wanted to satisfy her cravings. She felt terrified of feasting on blood, even if it was only animal blood. She was never a vegetarian before so she didn’t understand why she was so hesitant.

“Don’t worry,” he assured her, “you’ll be fine. I’ll… protect you.” He seemed to be reluctant to say the last two words, and she wondered if it was because he felt he had already failed in protecting her by changing her.

“I know you’ll always protect me.” She smiled at him.

She stood up on shaking legs. The absence of blood, or maybe it was just the knowledge of the change instead of the change itself, left her trembling. He watched her with guilt and concern. “I’m fine,” she insisted, answering the question in his eyes.

She noticed her reflection in the mirror hanging on the wall beside the door. She gasped aloud. She looked beautiful. Her ivory skin was pale and her features were elegant and smooth. Her eyes were a bright red reflecting her recent change more than how starved she was. The reflection was a striking change from her old one, but the changes were surprising subtle.

Edward walked behind her wrapping his arms around her. They stood before the mirror together. The reflection beheld his beauty well – his marble features and golden eyes. She looked as though she belonged with him now. Their splendor seemed to compliment each other’s instead of taking away from the others.

“Edward,” she whispered watching her lips move in a strange grace that she never noticed before.

“Bella,” he said back. His voice was strong, familiar.

She wondered briefly if she sounded differently than she did before. She didn’t think she could get used to how right they looked with each other. She would be looking at this reflection forever, never changing. She hoped that Edward would always be there with her. “Are we bound together now?” The words fell out of her mouth.

“We’ve always been bound together, Bella because we love each other.” Edward’s voice was steady and tender.

She reached down and grabbed his hand. She looked down and watched as she entwined her pale fingers in his. Their hands were a beautiful pale that matched, showing their new similarities. She glanced nervously up at Edward’s face. He was staring at their hands too.

“We are entwined together now like our hands are.” The passion he said the words in shook her. There was no give in his words, like she had no choice now but to be with him.

She had already chosen. She lifted their joint hands rubbed the back of her hand against his cheek. “Together.” His skin was still as cold as before, but she knew she shared his lack of heat with her own skin.

He turned his head slightly and kissed the back of her hand. “Together,” he agreed.