After returning home from saving Bella in Port Angeles, Edward must confront his family and their feelings about his involvement with a human.
1. Chapter 1
Rating 4.5/5 Word Count 2967 Review this Chapter
By: Lady Saffir
Takes place after Edward drops Bella off from their impromptu date in Port Angeles. Written before I read MS, but I had to finish the fic, and why not share? And I have to say I'm amazed at the things that are fairly close to what Stephenie wrote. Hope you like.
DISCLAIMER: I own no rights to the Twilight universe. I'm simply playing with the characters a bit.
My temper returned after dropping Bella off at her house, my mind once more turning to the vile thoughts of the men that had wanted to rape Bella. My hands clenched unconsciously as I snarled under my breath. To allow those scums to live was almost unbearable! I would not track them down, I swore to myself, loosening my hands when the steering wheel groaned under the pressure. No matter that I wanted to beat them to a bloody pulp, to grind their brains to mush for even daring to think those heinous thoughts. I would not drive back to Port Angeles. Bella was safe, that was all that mattered.
But oh, the rage! It would not leave me in peace! It was a sinister voice in the back of my mind, slyly whispering that this wouldn't be the first time I had tracked down such mortals. If I would do such a thing for mere strangers, surely Bella deserved at least the same. Would it be so bad if I only snapped their necks, if no blood was spilled? Surely Carlisle would understand.
The thought of Carlisle pulled me back to myself, the pressure in my chest easing as I thought what even that course of action would do to my father. We were not on this earth to be judge, jury and executioner, he was fond of saying, but rather we should do our utmost to make the world a better place. Always be more than your baser instincts, I could practically hear him murmur to me.
I was home by now, pulling in to the garage, still fighting to gain some semblance of peace. The sight of Emmett's Jeep was a welcome distraction. If I could not take my frustration out on mere humans, I was sure my brother would willingly help me release my anger. Like all brothers we loved to scuffle and pound on each other and it had been some time since we'd last fought.
"Emmett," I growled, stalking in to the house. I could hear him and Jasper in the other room playing video games while Alice and Rosalie discussed the latest fashion trends. "You and me, outside, right now."
"Sure, just a minute. I'm about to demolish this pathetic loser, then I'll be more than happy to beat your sorry ass," he bragged.
"Now!" I yelled, ripping the controller from his hands and smashing it to bits. I stalked out to the yard, not caring if he tried to tackle me from behind. Let him try to fight dirty. I'd do my best to block his thoughts, to make this a true fight.
True to style he didn't disappoint me, coming at me from behind with a growl. I made no move to avoid his attack and the two of us went flying through the air, punches already being thrown before we'd hit the ground. We left a rather large divot in the front yard from the force of our landing, but tearing up Esme's landscaping was the least of my concerns at the moment.
Emmett managed to get me in a head lock, ruffling my air. "Jeez, Edward, I'm surprised you- oof!"
I threw an elbow in to his side, twisting in his grasp to escape. I fell back a few feet, waiting for him to turn and face me. I was quickly losing the ability to see my brother before me. Rather, the faces of those four men from earlier swam in my vision, my snarl of rage uncontrolled. Once more their thoughts crossed my mind, and I snapped, my rage turning me in to a berserker. The familiar surroundings dissolved around me, replaced by the narrow street where Bella had been trapped.
I lunged at my opponent, my fist catching him squarely in the jaw, his head snapping back from the blow. The sound echoed through the clearing, fueling me on. I was moving lightening fast, landing punches and blows all over his body. If he hit me at all, I didn't feel it. I was past such mundane things as feeling physical pain, the pain in my mind overwhelming all of my senses.
I cannot say how long we battled or even which one of us was winning. I certainly didn't hear the slam of two cars doors or Esme's voice calling out for us to stop. The next conscious thing I remembered was the rather punishing blow to the side of my head followed immediately by two strong arms wrapping around me from behind, effectively pinning me in place.
Calm began to seep through my mind, the red haze of my thoughts clearing quickly. It was Jasper's arms locked around my body, his battle scarred arms straining to hold me in place while he worked his emotional magic. Rational thought returned quickly and I looked around, spotting Emmett sitting on the ground a few feet away, Rosalie hovering over him protectively. She snarled at me, cursing me in her mind.
Carlisle stepped in front of me, concern etched in to his features. "Edward, what is the meaning of all this? Alice says you started the fight?" Edward, you never start the fights. What brought this on?
His thoughts pulled a fresh snarl of rage from my throat. Jasper's arms tightened even more, the strain of my arms being pulled backward now beginning to hurt.
"I'll tell you what happened," Rosalie interrupted, her face furious. "It shouldn't be too hard to piece together. He's covered in her scent, Carlisle. He's spent the evening with his precious Bella," she spat the name out, stalking over to where we stood. "I'm sure his car reeks of the human. Be sure you air it out before we go to school tomorrow, Edward. That smell nauseates me." She turned to walk back to Emmett, her back stiffening at my words.
"Yes, I was with Bella, Rosalie, and it's a good thing I followed her to Port Angeles. Or would you rather I hadn't been there? Perhaps if she had been raped as well then you'd like her a bit better? Is that it? Since you weren't saved in time, no one else should be either?" I lashed out, not caring at the moment how hurtful my words were.
"Say you're sorry," Emmett growled, pushing to his feet to stalk towards me. "Punch me all you want, but don't you EVER say anything like that to Rose again."
"I won't take it back," I disputed. "I'm sick and tired of her attitude. I'm sick and tired of everyone's attitude! Why, when I finally find someone that interests me, should I ignore her? Am I not allowed to be happy as well? Is that it? It's all well and good that each of you has someone to love, but I'm not allowed to same honor? If that's the case, then I no longer want to be a part of this family!" I spat, attempting to twist out of Jasper's arms. "Let go of me, already," I growled.
"No," was my only answer before such a feeling of peace stole through me that my knees buckled. Jasper half carried, half dragged me in to the house, depositing me on the sofa. Esme was at my side in an instant, holding one hand tightly and pleading for me to be calm and not do anything rash with her thoughts.
The rest of our family followed, Rosalie and Emmett taking the loveseat, both of them glaring at me. Their thoughts were not unexpected so I ignored them, focusing on Carlisle instead. The disappointment and frustration he was feeling was enough to make me cringe and wish that he hadn't come home to see this. Was I to forever be a disappointment to the man I considered my father?
Alice perched next to me on the couch, one small hand reaching out to pat my knee reassuringly. Just be honest, that's all you need to do she thought to me, reaching back to twine her other hand with Jasper's. He stood behind me, one hand on my shoulder, his grip firm.
"Now, then. We are going to calmly discuss everything that has been happening lately. Everyone will have a chance to voice their thoughts and concerns - in a polite manner - and we will all listen to each other," Carlisle ordered, giving Rosalie and myself a meaningful look. "Edward, start by telling us what happened this evening."
Jasper's hand tightened in warning on my shoulder, no doubt feeling my anger begin to boil again. I took a calming breath, staring only at Carlisle as I spoke.
"I followed Bella and her friends to Port Angeles. I wasn't paying close attention to where they were; the sun was out so I was simply driving about town. You know I can't hear Bella's thoughts, so I was listening in to Jessica Stanley's thoughts. She was so full of Mike this and Mike that I couldn't stand it any longer and blocked her out for a bit." Emmett's snort of laughter had me inclining my head in his direction. "She's as shallow as a teaspoon and a boor. It was a while before I realized that Bella wasn't with her, and I started driving around, listening to the humans to find someone that had seen her."
I edited out how frantic I had grown when I realized that somehow, the humans in this town hadn't noticed Bella. How could they not? I wondered again, shaking my head when I realized I was only attempting to delay the return of that heinous memory.
"And then I saw her through his thoughts," I continued, my voice dropping to a whisper. "He was following her, he and a friend, and they had two others waiting ahead to block off any escape route she might have. His thoughts, Carlisle!" My voice was muffled as I buried my head in my hands. Esme's hand rubbed circles on my back, but I was beyond comfort at this moment. I shuddered, my mind being able to perfectly recall the scene as I had rounded the corner.
"She knew they had cornered her, and she was going to stand and fight them. She admitted as much at dinner. She knew she couldn't outrun them. She has terrible balance," I stated, raking my fingers through my hair. "I was barely in time. Why her? Why do these things happen to her?" I demanded, turning my head to look at Esme. Her face was full of compassion, her thoughts in tumult. "What if I'm not there the next time?"
"You took her to dinner?" Jasper asked, surprised. "You've barely been able to tolerate sitting next to her in Biology, yet you took her to dinner, then drove her home?"
"It was that or track the human scum down and rip them to pieces," I growled. "I tried to do the better thing."
My mind flashed back to our conversation in the car. I groaned, knowing what I was about to reveal would set my family off again. Alice saw my decision and sighed, shaking her head at me. Don't do it! Not right now.
"You said to be honest," I reminded her, turning back to Carlisle. "Carlisle, she knows."
Esme gasped, one hand flying up to cover her mouth. Rosalie began yelling again while Emmett questioned my intelligence. Carlisle was silent, taking time to think through everything.
It was Jasper's thoughts though that had me snarling, launching myself off to couch to turn and glare at my brother. He backed a few steps away, giving himself room to maneuver.
"Don't you dare," I hissed.
"She knows, Edward. And YOU know the rules of our world," Jasper stated calmly.
"We'll take care of it, Edward. It was be quick and painless," he promised. "You won't have to worry about her again."
"I will rip you limb from limb if you go anywhere near her," I growled, sinking in to a crouch. Jasper had the experience with fighting other vampires, but I had a slight advantage with being able to read his thoughts. It would be an ugly, messy fight, but if fighting the man I considered a brother would keep Bella safe, so be it.
"You would fight us to defend Bella?" Esme asked quietly, still seated on the couch.
I gave a short nod.
Esme sighed then and Jasper and I turned to look at her in shock. I could only imagine what Jasper was feeling, but Esme's thoughts....
"You're happy that I'm willing to tear someone to pieces for even thinking of harming Bella?" I asked, incredulous.
"Don't you see what this means, Edward?" Esme asked.
"It's no use, Jazz," Alice chimed in. She was at her husband's side, looping one arm through his, effectively blocking him from escaping or attacking. "Don't worry, you'll grow to love her in time," she added confidently.
At her words I focused on her thoughts. What I saw there made me stagger, my head already shaking in denial. "No, Alice, no. That won't happen. I won't let it happen. You're wrong," I moaned, sinking to the floor. Carlisle and Esme were on either side of me, worry in their thoughts.
I looked up to see Alice smile at Carlisle, answering his unspoken question. "A daughter," she laughed. "A sister. A lover," she sighed, dancing over to sink to the floor before me. "Oh, Edward, finally. You'll have to introduce us soon. We're going to be the best of friends, I just know," she laughed again at her words, patting my cheek.
Rosalie leapt from her seat, fury radiating from her body. "No! I refuse to accept that pitiful little human child as a sister. I hope you weren't planning on changing her soon, Edward. I want plenty of advance notice so I can be long gone," she huffed, tossing her mane of hair over her shoulder before stalking out the back door.
I looked at Emmett, waiting for his reaction to Alice's vision. Emmett merely shrugged, turning to follow his wife. I think you're crazy man, but if you're happy, that's what matters. I'll work on Rose.
The night continued to drag on. After Rosalie and Emmett had left, Carlisle and Esme had peppered me with questions regarding Bella, curious to understand the pull I felt towards her. I felt like a fool trying to explain the puzzle she represented to me. I confessed at one point to the fact that she was pulling the human male side of me out from its long buried spot. The feelings of protectiveness and anger at her supposed friend's thoughts, as well as the jealousy as I watched the males of our school vie for her attention only served to fuel Esme's interest. I also took the opportunity to explain how exactly Bella had uncovered our secret, omitting that I was guilty of dropping several hints that we were indeed different from humans.
It was as we were watching the morning news, listening to the weather forecast that I realized how hard this morning would be on Bella. It was supposed to be very foggy and cold and she had no jacket, as well as an ancient vehicle. The drive to school would be very uncomfortable for her.
Alice appeared at the top of the stairs, her face pulled in to a frown. "Can't Jazz and I ride with you? I hate trying to cram four of us in to Rosalie's vehicle. I'm sure Bella wouldn't mind," she pleaded.
I read from her thoughts what she had seen. I would apparently be picking Bella up this morning. Another thought flashed, this one of Bella wrapped in my jacket, her cheeks rosy and warm.
"Not this morning, Alice. Let her get used to the idea of being alone with one of us before we trap her in a car with three of us," I told my sister, chuckling at her pout. Alice tended to live in the future, so if she had seen that she would be good friends with Bella, she was ready to start that process.
Alice sighed, disappearing from view for a moment before returning, my leather jacket in her hands. "I made sure to get it pretty warm, so it should be fine as long as you warm the Volvo up before you leave," she stated, placing a quick kiss on my cheek. "Have fun driving to school."
I was the first to leave, afraid that I would miss Bella and have to follow her to school. Rosalie continued to spew vitriolic thoughts in my direction, but everyone else seemed to accept my path for now, if not actively encourage it. Esme's thoughts were the warmest as she pulled me in to a hug.
I'm so happy for you.
"Don't be too happy," I warned, returning her hug. "This could still easily turn in to a tragedy."
I have every faith in you. You'll bring her home to meet us soon?
I grimaced. "We're supposed to go to Seattle on Saturday. Let's see how that goes first."