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A Dark Adaptaton of New Moon

Summary:
It's been a year since Edward left Bella. Strong ties bond Jacob and Bella together, but one night of surpise and misfortune will forver change the lives of these three people. What would you do when all you love is violently taken away?


Notes:


21. Chapter 21 - Anchorage

Rating 4.5/5   Word Count 2852   Review this Chapter

Chapter 21 - Anchorage

It wasn't long before we made it to the town and I discovered that we are in the southeast region of Anchorage, Alaska. The sun beginning to set, taking with it the little warmth it provided. My extremities ache painfully from the cold. Several times, Gabriel offered to pull his magic trick and pop in and out of location, but I refused. It wasn't so much the after effect of the phenomenal form of travel that bothered me. It was his touch. Every time I touch him, something happens. A vision of him or me or both, comes into play. Sometimes these visions are triggered simply by him standing too close to me. I haven't told him about it nor do I plan to. I'm still pissed at how elusive he's being with me considering everything I'm going through. Besides, it's also embarrassing to explain what it is I see when we touch. I think I'll keep this one to myself.

I haven't been able to stop thinking about Edward and his family. What would the Volturi want with them, and why only the four of them? I try to calm myself by thinking that if Edward or even Jasper would have sensed any hostility or impending danger; they would've put up a fight. The fact that they didn't can only mean that they came in peace. Even so, my nerves are on edge.

We finally reach a street with a small motel, the kind with that run-down feel that says it offers luxurious rooms when in actuality all it offers is a just musty old room with smelly carpets and worn and lumpy bed.

"We can stay here for now until I get us a car. In the morning, I'll find us a more comfortable place" says Gabriel. He's in a mood ever since we left the forest. The only other time he spoke to me was when he noticed how shriveled up and cold I was and offered to at least carry me and run out of the forest, since I didn't want to ‘disappear' with him. I had refused.

We walk into the motel lobby and instantly I feel the warmth my body so desperately needs. He pays for a night's stay and collects the keys. The old woman behind the counter gives us a reproachful look. For a moment I frown in confusion but within seconds I realize that here walks in a tall and strikingly handsome man, who appears to be in his mid-thirties and is accompanied by a young teenage girl who even though she is 18 years of age, appears only to be 16. I think about what face she would put on had she known the truth - that this unkempt thirty-something year old was, in fact, a thousand year old vampire.

We head up the narrow stairway to the second floor. Already my apprehension of the place is confirmed. As we walk along the hall, we hear voices and television sets and even two people engaged in some wild sexual escapade. I drop my head to conceal my blushing face. We reach our door which is the last one down the hall and mercifully, away from the animated lovers down the hall.

The room is actually not what I had expected. It's worse. There were no rugs, rather, a creaky wooden floor. The TV set is something straight out of the 80's and the bed, well; besides being modest... it was the only one. I scanned the room and found that there was no other place to sleep other than a single chair which could offer no comfort. As if reading my expression, Gabriel tosses the keys to the small nightstand and looks up at me.

"You can have the bed" he says.

"Thanks" I say and walk over to the window, looking out to the street below.

I can feel his eyes on me but after a few seconds, he walks over to the old radiator and cranks the valve.

"I'll be back in a few. Would you like me to bring you something to eat?" he asks in his signature low and scruffy voice.

"No" I say, staring hypnotically out the window. He hesitates for a moment before turning and exiting the room.

The minute he leaves, my emotions crash down on me and I begin to cry. Though I try not show it, I'm scared. Scared for Edward and the others, scared for myself, and scared of what may come in the future. I try to compose myself, in case he walks in unexpectedly. I need to call Charlie. I need to let him know that I'm ok. Surely this won't be enough to calm him but I figure he'll at least know I'm not dead, lying behind some bush in a forest.

I take out my cell phone and dial his number. It goes into voicemail after the fourth ring.

"Hey, Charlie. I'm just calling to tell you that I'm ok and that I'm not at Edward's house. I've gone with Alice to visit a relative and support her on their passing. I'll be home in a few days, but I will call you every day. I know you're upset but I have to be there for her. Talk to you later."

I hate that I have to lie to him but what else can I possibly tell him? At least he won't put up missing flyers with my face plastered all over town. Besides, how long can Edward possibly be away? Surely, he'll be back in a day or two, at least this is what I have to believe. I turn and walk to the bed, pulling the covers back and getting into it, sneakers, jacket and all. Until now, I didn't realize how tired I was. I close my eyes and welcome sleep.

****

The smell of butter and eggs slowly seeped into my sleep, awakening my senses. I blink against the morning light and push myself up from bed. For a moment, I was a little disoriented and looked around the unfamiliar room dubiously. I remember going to sleep last night with my sneakers and jacket on, and now I find them neatly placed on top of the dresser. I look towards my right and see him sitting there, on the single chair the room had to offer, leaning over a small table eating breakfast. The delectable aroma made my mouth water.

He looks up at me and takes a sip of his orange juice, washing down his food.

"You need to eat" he says as he gestures toward the nightstand with his eyes.

A large paper bag sits next to a tall Styrofoam cup with a straw in it. I grab the bag and remove its contents, finding a plate of home fries and a garden burger. I'm a little surprised that he would pick a garden burger over sausages but secretly grateful that he did. I look up at him and see him eating his last bit of omelet.

"Thanks" I say.

He doesn't answer me. He just continues chewing looking down at the floor. It's easy to forget that he's a vampire when I see him acting so normally. He eats, and by the look of his puffy eyes, he sleeps too. None of the Cullens eat or sleep. While I prefer a burger, Edward would prefer the actual cow instead.

He gets up and dumps his plate and cup in the trash and walks to the closet, taking out a plastic Gap bag.

"Get dressed as soon as you're done. I've found us a more comfortable place" he says as he tosses the bag. "When you're ready, I'll be downstairs."

The minute he leaves the room, I practically devour my meal savagely. I'm so hungry and this food tastes so heavenly right now. When I'm done eating, I trash everything and jump in the shower, relishing the feeling of the hot water running down my body. When I'm done, I begin to dry myself when I notice a small bag sitting on the sink. I look inside and find a toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, tampons, shaving cream, a Gillette, shampoo & conditioner, Blistex and a bottle of Neutrogena Facial Lotion. Now, I know this is definitely not included with the room.

Once I'm finished brushing my teeth, I peek outside of the bathroom to make sure he's not there. I walk over to the bag he left on the bed and pull out a pair of blue jeans, a white long sleeved tee shirt, a thick cable-knit sweater and a leather jacket. In a smaller bag, I find a matching set of lingerie, simple in design, along with a pair of socks, a knit hat, scarf and gloves. I blush at the discovery of the lingerie. He didn't have to go that far. As I dress I am pleasantly surprised to find that it all fits and begin to wonder if he checked my clothing for sizing as I slept.

I make my way downstairs and see that the old lady has been replaced with a younger man. He looks up at me and smiles, exposing crookedly yellow teeth.

"Enjoyed your stay, sweetheart?" he says flirtatiously.

"Uh, yeah. I believe my friend has already checked us out" I say questioningly.

"Yeah, he did" he says leaning over the counter, looking at me suspiciously.

"So... a friend, huh? Does that mean that you're taken?" he says slyly as his eyes skim across my body. I feel my skin begin crawl.

"It means that you must govern yourself" says Gabriel from behind me, in a low but serious tone.

I turn around and find him staring down at the clerk, callously. The clerk straightens up and swallows hard, all humor washed from his face.

"Get in the car" says Gabriel.

I walk to the door and wait for him to turn and walk with me. He's still eyeing the poor clerk and he looks like he might just pee on himself.

"Are you coming?" I ask.

He turns and walks over to me, holding the door as I pass. He walks past me and gets into the driver seat of a black on black Mercedes. What is it with vampires and luxurious cars? I mean, seriously. I walk to the car and get in, fastening my seatbelt. The car is warm and the smell of leather impregnates the air. He pulls out of the parking spot and begins to drive down the street, silently.

"Where are we going?" I ask.

"I've rented a flat not too far from here. You'll have your own room and bathroom. We'll stay there until we hear from Carlisle. Esme says he has not called yet but is sure that he will."

I don't like the feeling I got with that last sentence. It's been 24 hours since they've left and he still hasn't called? As if reading my mind, Gabriel turns to look at me.

"I can assure you that they're all right. Carlisle is good friend of Aro. He wouldn't cause him or any of his coven any harm."

"Who is Aro?" I ask.

"He is the leader of the Volturi" he says turning his attention back to the road.

"Carlisle is friends with the Volturi?"

"Carlisle is a friend to anyone he encounters and Aro, being the leader of our kind, is regarded as a King, if you will. If and when he calls for anyone, they must honor his request."

"Or what?" I ask.

He turns and looks at me questioningly and chuckles softly.

"Or he'll turn anyone who denies him into a mangy toad" he says smiling.

I stare at him, not amused by his humor. He looks back at me and smiles again.

"Relax, my lady. I was just trying to ease your worries. Truth be told, Aro takes great pride in the laws that govern us. He wouldn't do anything to one of our kind."

I sit back looking out the window, wondering where they were now and what was Edward doing this very minute. Then I remembered something.

"Back at their house, you said you saw Alice's vision and you told us that they brought along a tracker. I know what a tracker is and why you splashed blood all over the floor, but how did you know that? That one of them was a tracker?"

He frowns slightly and stares ahead. "I read his mind as he got closer to the house" he says as he reaches the radio and turns it on, scanning through the stations. I get the feeling he is bothered by something and from what little I know of him, I know for a fact that he will not talk about it. So I move along to the next question I have in line.

"Can you read my mind?" I ask, hoping that I have the same effect on him as Edward.

"I don't need to" he says.

"What do you mean by that?"

"You talk an awful lot. There isn't much of you that you hide" he mutters.

There it goes again. That arrogance that sends my nerves flying sky high. Instantly, my blood warms a few degrees in anger.

"Perhaps if you would answer some of my questions, I wouldn't feel the need to have to talk to you" I snap back.

"Oh, I highly doubt that" he says laughing quietly.

"Can you or can you not, dammit!" I scowl.

He turns his face to me and his grin has faded to a subtle smile. His eyes are liquid grey and warm.

"I don't have to read your mind, my lady," he says turning his eyes back to the road, "I already know you far too well to find it necessary to do so."

"You think you know me but you don't. And stop calling me ‘my lady'" I scathe back as I turn my face back to the window. From the reflection of the glass, I can see him turn to look at me, dolefully.

We didn't speak for the rest of the ride. He settled for some classical music on the radio and I tried to lose myself in to the array of violins. After about ten minutes of driving, he finally breaks his silence.

"You prefer the warmth the sun provides than the cold that winter brings. You like the way it creeps into the room in the morning, announcing the start of a new day. You love the smell of azaleas, roses, and jasmine and if you could, you'd have them sitting in every corner of every room. On stormy nights, the soft light of candles calm you and you like the way rain sounds against the roof. You prefer salty foods over sweeter ones, a lake over an ocean, the company of a friend over a crowd, day over night... You bite your bottom lip when you're thinking or when you're angry. You love to be kissed behind the small of your back and when you sleep, you ball up the blanket against your chest and blink your way slowly to sleep. You fear of getting old and not out of vanity, rather, the fear of losing the joys you get from living."

I stare back him, dumbstruck. It's as if I have lost all the will to speak, to be able to orchestrate a single sentence. He turns to look at me.

"I don't need to read your mind, Bella, when I've known you all my life" he murmurs. You may not believe it... you may not remember it... but I do. I remember every line your face forms when you smile, when you laugh, and when you cry. I remember every time you've kissed me and every time we made love. Your memory, the fear of losing it, is what's kept me living. And now you're the sun in someone else's sky and he loves you, just as I did, and now my only concern is for your safety."

His words have stunned me. He knows so much of me that Edward probably doesn't know. The impossibility of his story is beginning to seem more like a reality. I can't help but feel somewhat sorry for him. He spoke with such naked emotion, almost painfully. I try to imagine myself in his shoes and for a moment, I can understand his reluctance to share anything with me. For the rest of the way, he drives in silence, seemingly lost in thought.