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The Ripple Effect

Summary:
What if Bella’s parents never divorced & she was a normal girl. Best friends with Jacob Black for all her life & suddenly the Cullen’s moved to Forks. Everything is Alternate Universe, Romance, drama and friendships galore.


Notes:


17. Chapter 17, Unexpected Hero

Rating 0/5   Word Count 5664   Review this Chapter

Chapter 17, Unexpected Hero

They were coming after me; the words kept reverberating in my mind as Alice sped down the road towards the Cullen house. My hand hadn’t left Edward’s as we sat in the backseat silent, lost in thought. His smooth cool hand was perfect, all the contours explored by my shaking fingers.

“Something isn’t normal about Victoria Edward.” Alice mentioned, breaking the silence.

“I know.” Edward added. “We’ll discuss it later.”

She ignored him continuing with her line of thought. “I’ve been thinking about it for a while, how she is able to get closer to us than ever before, my powers...” She started as Edward gave her a look, filled with warning.

“Please Alice, I know what you are thinking but right now it is best that we get home and discuss it together.”

What Edward meant was he didn’t want to scare me, but I wasn’t scared. The normal reaction was fear, and maybe I had become immune to it but this numb feeling wasn’t an immunity. My mind had been on overload for so long it was as if I had been waiting for this moment. Like watching the dark clouds become more ominous, when the rain and thunder started it wasn’t a surprise.

His words were cold, protective and Alice looked at me through the rearview mirror, an encouraging smile brightening her pixie-like features. Despite her facade, I could tell my best friend was angry at her brother. She wanted me to know everything; Alice was the type of person who thought I could handle anything. Maybe she was right; after all if anyone knew how I could take the news it would be a psychic.

When I first walked into the Cullen home a few months ago, it was like another world. Everything that day was so meticulous and tidy, there was no warmth other than that of Esme and Alice’s welcome. But today I was lost in thought as we walked into the living room, Edward holding me protectively. The smells that permeated the air were sweet and intoxicating, like the Cullens themselves. I had never noticed it before not on my first day and not for months since.

This visit was different, every inch of the home became intriguing as I felt my life nearing an end, and the fear gave me renewed interest in my surroundings. As the vampire family settled around me, I could barely make out their words. They spoke in the quick hushed tones that I was used to, but this time it was to protect me. A few times, I could hear my name whispered and suddenly everything finally became clear. I eased away from the back of the white leather couch finally able to speak up.

“Use me.” I stammered as Edward winced shaking his head, he pulled me close not willing to let me go.

“No Bella.” He gasped as I nodded fighting back tears.

“I’m what he wants Edward, the thrill of an impossible chase. If he doesn’t get to my parents he’ll just go after others that are close to me. We have to end this now.”

The Cullens watched us and for some reason my gaze drifted towards Rosalie, she looked away, able to avoid my glance with her speed.

“We will leave you and I, and we will figure this out.” Edward pleaded, I shook my head smiling painfully at him, he was so sweet but too protective.

“You said it before Edward, Charlie and Renee are here. I should appreciate them while it lasts.” I grabbed his hand easing his grip from my waist.

“It would work, Edward.” Alice said, breaking out of a vision. Jasper held her tightly to him.

“Three versus seven I think we can handle it.” Emmet smirked, ready for a fight.

“No, Esme and I will watch the Swan house as planned.” Rosalie announced, her voice was cold, determined. I sighed thankful that Rosalie would protect my family.

“So three versus five, piece of cake.” Emmett added, a smile brightening his face with anticipation that he would get a bigger piece of the action.

“No, only two.” Alice chimed, her eyes glazed.

Emmett turned to his sister, disappointed as she glanced towards the door.

“We have a visitor.”

Edward hissed as Carlisle held up his hand walking down the stairs towards the door. Laurent, the dark tall red-eyed vampire from the field, stood waiting by the doorway. Carlisle was flanked by his sons as he let the visitor into the foyer. The rest of us stayed at the top of the stairs watching.

“I’m leaving the coven.” He announced his eyes falling on me strangely. I just wanted to warn you, Victoria is subpar at getaways. Her skills fit perfectly with James, one a hunter the other an excellent escape artist. I have grown tired of their actions, thus I am leaving them. Edward tensed, his gaze falling upon me as Carlisle walked outside with the other vampire.

“Perfect” Emmett laughed high fiving Jasper as Rosalie shook her head annoyed.

A solemn look overcame Jasper as he turned to Alice who was watching Edward and I.

"Bella I need to talk to you for a moment." Edward announced speeding up the stairs and took me into the den at the back of the house.

He held me for a moment, but my determination didn't fade.

"I can't let you do this." He finally said pulling away from me as he gazed deeply into my eyes.

"Edward this is partly my fault, for whatever reason James is after me. This would be happening one way or another. But I'm half of this relationship and you have to let me do this."

He shook his head leaning so close to me, his sweet breath in my face as our foreheads touched.

"I can't loose you, not when I've just found you." He finally whispered, his cold stony lips gently kissing my cheeks.

"You won't, but I'm not some china doll that's meant to be kept indoors in a glass box. I can help end this and I need to do it, for your family and for Forks." His hand gently cupped my face as he studied my features.

Suddenly I understood what he was doing, like me Edward was taking everything in, lingering on the things he felt he would soon loose.

A sound inaudible to human ears made Edward sigh as he kissed me gently on the forehead, before taking my hand.

"We're being summoned." He announced acting for the first time like a teenager.

As we walked out of the den, the seriousness of this ordeal was still unreal. I knew at any moment it would hit me, like a ton of bricks; I would realize this was a gamble with my life or even my humanity. However, for now, Edward led me to the living room couches and it still felt very surreal.

“I still would feel better if you stayed behind my love.” Jasper pleaded, finishing a conversation started moments ago. Alice turned to him, she looked sad but cooperative and then nodded.

“I’ll be able to see anything you do Alice.” Edward added, glad to keep his sister out of the fray.

"Is Laurent gone?" I inquired as Carlisle smiled nodding.

"We sent him to the Denalis." He answered me looking to Alice for confirmation; she gave a noticeable nod for my benefit.

"We'll need a place to trap them, any ideas?" Carlisle asked gazing slowly to each of his family members.

"The cottage." Esme gasped peering at Edward and then to me, there was a slight mix of horror and sadness on her face. "It was meant for you Edward and..." She looked like my mother did when I had a broken limb, a pure expression filled with motherly concern.

Edward gave a quick nod, swallowing back whatever Esme had left unsaid. The plan began to unfold, Edward held me tightly to his side while they laid out every detail.

I wasn't sure how I had fallen asleep, maybe it was the soothing voice of conspiring vampires but when I awoke it was to Alice smiling over me.

"I wish I remembered dreaming." She said with a child-like innocence.

My yawning made her eyes light up as Edward approached his sister, scowling at my sleepy form.

"I should get you to bed." He smiled grimly as I stood up stretching into his arms.

"I wanted to have a sleepover but my brother is such as spoilsport." Alice pouted.

"She needs her rest Alice, you may not remember being human, but I do and it was tiring." Alice took my empty hand walking with Edward almost guiding me to the stairs.

"I'll see you tomorrow bright and early." She smirked, her arms engulfing me into a hug before she gave me a slight kiss on the cheek.

"Alice!" Edward warned her as his sister recoiled, reprimanded.

"Nothing is for certain Edward, don't ruin my fun." I was confused and exhausted as Edward stopped in front of his family by the bottom of the stairs. Six pairs of beautiful amber eyes looked at me filled with wonder. I laughed drunk half asleep; it must have been years since they watched a human sleep. My body swaying in exhaustion was a sight for sore eyes, Edward held me tightly as Esme hugged me goodnight, her decadent scent put thoughts of homemade cookies and sweet tea into my awoken dream.

"Goodnight Bella." She whispered, almost shaking when she released me. Esme was a mother first always, even to me a fragile human. Carlisle pulled her close to his chest as Edward turned me gently lifting me up and we ascended the stairs.

"I can walk." I protested quietly, but it was too late his door closed and a soft light illuminated Edward's bedroom.

My heart quickened to the realization that I would be sleeping in Edward's room tonight, the sudden spike in blood pressure jolted me awake. There was a large queen sized bed sitting in the middle of the once cleared room, it seemed out of place.

"Where did this come from?" I asked, collapsing onto the soft bed while Edward watched me uneasy.

"We keep beds in the basement for special occasions. Sometimes Child Services like to peak in, plus the movers would think it odd if we all did not have beds. I have never needed one till now." He looked away and I smiled, dreamily. All the others had beds because they were part of a couple, I couldn't disguise a giggle at the thought. Edward sat down across from me nervous.

"What was that about?" I asked, leaning back into the soft plush quilt. "Why did you snap at Alice?"

"Alice and her visions." He finally answered

"And?" I retorted, as he turned to me his lithe fingers gently grazing my bottom lip.

"And, she sees many outcomes right now, but one..." He paused his hand dropping from my face looking away. I knew what it was then, the one thing Edward was fighting to stop.

"And she sees me like you?" I finished for him.

"She's been seeing it for months, hiding it from me but it won't happen Bella. Not like this." He was so sure of himself his eyes bore through me as if he was trying to will his words to become the truth. "Please reconsider Bella, this is too dangerous."

I shook my head tucking my feet lazily underneath the covers.

"I should sleep, big day tomorrow." I whispered, my cheeks burning at the idea of spending the night in Edward's room. The enormity of the situation still hadn’t hit me yet, maybe it was the lack of sleep or reality. This, what could be my last full night's rest didn't feel real. Tomorrow I was going to offer myself up as bait, and if for some reason I failed there were only two outcomes.

When I awoke the next morning I was aware of two things, the house smelled of IHOPs and two vampires were watching me.

"Alice leave her alone, let her get some rest." Esme chided as her daughter stared closely at me.

"I'm just watching, you never let me have any fun. I don't remember any of this and who knows, this may be my last chance." Alice's voice sounded excited at the premise of my last moments sleeping. Esme's breath hitched, as my eyes fluttered open.

"We still have a minute before Edward's back." She chimed looking to me with a smile as my eyes cracked open to the day. "Morning Bells." She sang.

It was one of those experiences where people say, 'you had to be there.' Two perfectly dressed vampires greeting you in the morning was surreal. But like every morning I greeted Alice with a smile, the thought of this afternoon still floating in the back of my mind.

“Do I smell pancakes?” I asked as Esme stepped forward nodding quickly.

“Of course but shower first.” She grinned handing me a towel and motioning towards the door. Esme seemed to be enjoying the moment as much as Alice, despite what was ahead of us. Lazily, I followed Alice out into the hallway as she walked me to the large bathroom.

“You can use my stuff.” My best friend offered, almost too excited. “I’ll wait for you downstairs.” With a bounce in her step, she turned around heading back into Edward’s room, making me wonder. There was no doubt in my mind that Alice knew the outcome of tonight; her lack of concern kept me from worrying.

I took longer in the shower than I would at home. Turning all the gadgets and adjusting the contraptions that the Cullens thought were normal. When I had riffled through all the cabinets and my hair was completely dry; I emerged from the steamy room almost running into Alice holding an outfit out for me.

“I picked your favorite comfy jeans and sweater.” She grinned, following me into Edward’s bedroom. I could not hear anyone downstairs but that didn’t mean we were alone in the house. My human ears weren’t sufficient around the Cullens.

“Thanks.” I finally said to Alice as she laid down on the now perfectly made bed, while I got dressed.

“Edward’s waiting downstairs, he’s very nervous especially since there’s only a few hours.” She announced helping me with my ponytail while I eyed myself in the mirror.

“We’ve already eaten twice.” She answered my question before it touched my lips. “But Esme has gone over board for you, so at least eat something.”

I had every intention of eating as much as I could stomach this morning, suddenly pancakes and French toast sounded like ambrosia.

Cautiously I followed Alice down the stairs; the Cullens were in the dinning room talking quietly. Esme dressed in a frilly apron, smiled as she finished squeezing the last orange into a large pitcher.

“I used to love my mother’s fresh squeezed orange juice when I was a girl.” Esme gushed as Edward pulled my seat out for me to sit beside him.

“You look nice Bella.” Carlisle commented, and I realized this was all for me. They were trying to seem normal, to keep me calm. The scene reminded me of my first visit, when the Cullens were just a new family that bordered on perfection. A smile played upon my lips at the thought of the Cullens being normal.

“Thank you Carlisle.” I finally replied, noticing Emmett and Rosalie weren’t at the table I looked to Edward perplexed. He flinched before Alice spoke up.

“Rosalie and Emmett are watching your parents; I’ll join her after breakfast.” The idea that Alice wanted to stay with me as long as possible made me smirk before cutting into my pancakes.

It was a perfect, cloudy day; the wind was blowing from the East, keeping the nip on my cheeks at a bare minimum. Esme and Carlisle were walking the southern line of the woods about a half mile away from the little cottage. Alice and Rosalie were with my parents and I knew they would protect them with everything they had. Emmett was like a puppy on his first hunt, smelling the air with electrified excitement as Jasper joked with him. The two seemed like teenage brothers but there was a consistency in their movements. If you didn’t know any better, you would think they were goofing off and not leading the way.

Edward and I were in the middle of the web, walking with care making a defined track leading to the cottage. It was all part of the plan, bring the scent to the cottage and leave me there. There was no way James could think we would be this stupid, but from what Edward had read in his mind, it didn’t matter. The man was over confident, cocky and that was his downfall. He thought of only the chase and not the consequences, that’s why he stayed with Victoria. He was the brawn while she was the brain, but so far, Alice thought James would be alone. Fear ebbed more and more into my thoughts, every step we took into the woods things seemed clearer.

The snow became more sparse the deeper we walked into the woods, little piles of the frozen bits clung to the moss at the base of the trees. When I spotted the small brick cottage with a red roof, it took my breath away. If this were any other day a smile would be plastered on my face. But today I felt like Gretel going into the Witch’s house, leaving no breadcrumbs to find my way home.

“You have to go in alone.” Edward announced turning to me with a frown on his face. Our hands were still intertwined, thistles stuck on my clothes and the cold air burned my cheeks.

“Okay.” I managed to croak out, my throat was dry, and it was even hard to swallow.

“You can say no Bella, please.” Edward pleaded, cupping my face with his cold strong hands.

“No, I can’t Edward.” I protested, wanting to be a coward; to turn and run, but that was not an option not anymore. This wasn’t a movie I could turn off or a book I could throw away never to read again. This was real, and if this relationship was going to work, that meant taking the good with the bad.

‘Think of it like a test Bella.’ I could hear my conscious say, my father’s voice soothing me as I took a deep breath.

“I can do this Edward.” I finally added walking away from him as the three boys watched me creak open the front door and then I was alone.

The cottage was aired out overnight that much was obvious. There wasn't a spec of dust or a bit of furniture out of place. A warm lush carpet was in the center of the living room, the kitchen a small alcove to the right overlooked a creek after a small drop. The place looked to be an old hunter's shack, refurnished by Esme years ago.

The Cullens must have been in Forks around the late fifties. The yellow wool chair next to the dead fireplace looked straight off the Archie Bunker set. I meandered into the kitchen, opening the fully stocked refrigerator. I hadn’t seen such old fixtures before in my life, the kitchen table was set with a red checkered cloth with matching red vinyl lined metal chairs. There was an old transistor radio by the sink next to a small window. The aging structure felt like a time capsule. Everything around me stuck in a much simpler time; before I was born, when things moved slower and felt organic.

The house was comfortable, like a place perfect for a weekend getaway. A small set of stairs led up to a master bedroom from the kitchen. The room was softly lit; a handmade quilt covered the Queen-size bed with an elaborate inlaid headboard. A round wool carpet stretched under the feet of the bed, sandwiched between twin nightstands. I circled the room surveying the outside windows; white mesh curtains obscured my sight.

The house was so quaint and perfect; it was comparable to a little chalet. I imagined traveling to the South of France with Edward, before collapsing on the plush bed. The ceilings were once white or maybe eggshell but now they looked grey. I was lying on top of a hand-stitched quilt, embossed on the corner were the initials EC, for Esme Cullen. My mind drifted far away, day dreaming about anything but the present. After a few minutes I heard a muffled noise on the side of the house, sitting up I held me breath waiting.

“Little girl.” A soft voice whispered as I turned to the window next to a mahogany valet stand. My heart began to beat erratically, finally it had hit me.

My feet took only a moment to move as I scrambled down the stairs, finally the chase had begun.

‘Wait till you hear Emmet.’ I remembered Edward saying to me, one of the many directions he gave as we went over today’s plan.

I grabbed a knife, knowing it wouldn’t help as a maniacal laugh vibrated the living room walls. My first instinct was to run, to flee from the house but I had to wait. Holding the long blade in my hand, I turned to the sounds as James clung to the old siding mocking his prey. And then a crash, a window was broken as I heard James gruff trying to get away from his attacker.

“Bella run!” Emmet screamed as I followed his direction, opening the door and speeding away from the house.

I was supposed to keep going, to make it to the southern line where Carlisle and Esme waited for me.

‘You are not supposed to turn around Bella, under no circumstances okay?’ I remembered Edward saying, but the sounds coming from behind me were too much. I turned and made the first mistake of the day.

James was fast, Emmet was much stronger than he was but that only mattered if he could catch him. Every time the big vampire came close to James, he was thwarted. It was the perfect opportunity for my luck to give out; my feet collided with some protruding roots as my body tumbled to the ground and down the soft hill. When I stopped tumbling at the base of a creek, I looked up dazed caked in mud. If I was hard to track before now, it seemed almost impossible.

If I called out for Edward James would hear me too. ‘James.’ I thought, looking around for a sign of Emmet or anyone familiar.

‘Run Bella.’ I heard again, Edward’s voice crying out in my head. I didn’t hesitate or look back this time but took off deeper into the woods, hoping Edward would find me through Alice. Thank God for Alice, she was my watcher my salvation, especially now that I was lost. My chest began to burn after a few moments, as I stopped catching my breath. I stood there motionless in the middle of the woods, my teeth were chattering as the early spring chill still held the air. My heart raced, I was a sitting duck waiting for either friend or foe. A crack of a twig sent me reeling to my left as I saw James, his hair disheveled blood trickling down his face from several of Emmett’s blows.

“Hello again little girl.” He purred. “All alone are we?” He smiled, his blood red eyes so different from anything I had ever seen before. It wasn’t malice that I saw but pure reverie. The kill for him was like ecstasy, a pleasurable moment that he liked to relish in.

“Please.” I begged, trying to stall the pounce hoping Edward and Emmett were on their way; praying they were okay.

His eyes looked up as if I had given him a gift.

“Oh I love it when they say please, do it again.” He stepped closer smelling the air, satisfied with himself for the catch.

“You don’t want to do this.” I finally stammered as he laughed, taking another step forward.

“Oh but I do.” He finally admitted, he was so close to me, too close.

His muscles were tense, building up strength to pounce but then a low growl came from behind me. I couldn’t move, but I could feel a hot breath heat my heels and growl again. James winced looking at whatever was behind me, he took a step back and I saw for the first time fear in his eyes.

The vampire shook his head backing away another step from his attack just as Emmett crashed down on him. He was joined by Edward as the two vampires fought to hold him down, Jasper not far behind keeping a safe distance just in case.

“Bella are you okay?” He asked, as I pulled my gaze from the scene finally able to breathe looking behind me for the animal that had been there a moment ago. There was nothing there, just bushes, no tracks nothing.

“I’m fine.” I admitted, my arms wrapped around me for warmth as Edward turned to the struggling vampire under his brother’s weight. Jasper was at Emmett's side sneering at the vampire, excited at the catch.

“Thought you could get away huh?” Emmett sneered, pressing his knee down harder on the blonde.

“Leave him to me.” Edward announced, grabbing hold of James as his brothers started gathering firewood.

James fought to be free, eyeing Emmet and Jasper as they began to build a woodpile.

“Are you keeping her for yourself?” James finally asked Edward, a sick smile spread across his face.

Edward shook the man turning to me for a second before back to his prey.

“She is quite delectable I can see the attraction but you know it’s not nice to play with your food, not for too long or they spoil.” James laughed as Edward looked to him, lost in his rage. His mouth opened and he lunged for James’s throat.

“Edward!” Carlisle’s voice rang from the distance as he made his way to his son. Jasper helped his father with Edward using his gift to calm his brother.

I stood frozen as Carlisle pulled Edward from tearing at James’s flesh. My heart was still crashing against my chest, it wasn’t over it couldn’t be. This was the one time I wished to be wrong, Emmett grinned from the fire as I heard a loud hiss. A flash of strawberry blonde hair was flying at me full force.

This was it I thought, Edward was too far away, his speed wasn’t going to save me this time. I smiled staring at his beautiful features. But my vision blurred, obscured by a beautiful, perfectly managed blonde curtain. The force of Victoria hitting Rosalie knocked me down as she took the brunt of the attack. The two vampires met again in mid air, Rosalie thrashing at the enraged vampire. My eyes were on Rosalie, my heart skipping beats as Edward contained himself coming to my side protectively.

I could feel Edward holding me, but my eyes were glued to Rosalie fighting like a momma bear protecting her cub. I felt a sharp pain in my wrist when Edward tried to drag me away from the fray. The numbing and throbbing sensation was eerily familiar; I had either broken or sprained my wrist.

Emmett watched as his love crushed Victoria against the tree, sending her crashing to the ground. He had one eye on the fight the other helped Jasper rip apart James piece by piece.

“I have to get you out of here.” Edward whispered, trying to protect me from the sight. My injured hand burned against his cold skin, I bit down on my lip as he lifted me from the site.

“Is Rosalie okay?” I whispered worried, as I heard a thud and Emmett went to help his girlfriend.

Edward smiled, trying to push back his nerves.

“She’ll be fine.” I looked around him at a disheveled Rosalie, her hair was slightly out of place but she had Victoria in a few pieces.

“God she looks beautiful even now.” I stammered shaking my head, as Rosalie looked up a smile creeping on her face.

“Someone has to protect the human around here.” She beamed, flipping her hair to the side as she turned away throwing the twitching limbs into the fire.

“Are you hurt?” Edward asked as I groaned while he skipped through the trees, towards his Volvo.

“I think I sprained my wrist back there.” I whispered as he picked up speed.

The hospital, of Forks Washington has been one of the most miserable places for me. Being the Sheriff’s daughter meant every injury was town gossip, but as I walked into the exam room hand in hand with Edward all eyes seemed to be on him.

I let Carlisle call Renee and Charlie, my parents weren’t surprised that I had fallen on our camping trip. After Renee freaked out for a minute Carlisle’s soothing voice had reassured her enough. She agreed to wait for me to come home.

As I sat in the exam room waiting for my x-ray results Alice and Edward watched over me both buzzing from the excitement.

"Have you ever been on a plane?" Alice questioned smiling.

"No." I answered.

Edward looked to his sister. "Alice?"

"I think we have to go to Italy Edward." She answered.

"Laurent?" He asked, before she nodded.

"Unfortunately."

I was confused about what they were talking about; I thought Laurent had gone to live with the Denalis.

"What about them?" I inquired.

"He didn't stop at Alaska; he changed his mind he's going to the Volturi to tell Aro about you, and your capabilities."

My heart froze, after everything I learned about the Volturi I didn't want to met them or for them to know about me.

Alice and Edward seemed to communicate silently before my boyfriend smiled to me kissing my forehead gently.

“I’ll be right back.” He whispered, leaving me alone with his sister.

After a minute, Alice turned to me her eyes wide in excitement.

“What happened out there Bella?” She finally asked sitting next to me on the exam bed, full of energy.

“What do you mean what happened, you saw everything right?” I stammered as Alice shook her head.

“You were cornered by James one minute and then darkness, that’s why I sent Rosalie after you.” Alice explained searching my face for some hint of an answer.

“I don’t know, something scared James off, for a moment it was like he was afraid but all I heard was a growl.” My friend’s eyes widened as she nodded to herself.

“You haven’t told anyone about this yet have you.” She stated, smirking at me like a co-conspirator.’

“No you are the only one; I didn’t think it mattered, not in the grand scheme of things.” Alice smirked shaking her head before shrugging.

“Maybe it doesn’t, but if Rosalie didn’t show up when she did we would have been too late. You disappearing from my vision was the key to all of this.” She stated, an amused expression on her face before taking my sprained wrist in her hands.

“This will be fine in two weeks.” She announced matter of factly, cooling the swelling that had engorged my once small wrist.

Alice and I waited for Edward and Carlisle to return to the room. From what my friend explained to me all four of us needed to go, it was the only way. Edward wouldn’t leave without me, Alice would be a trump card and Carlisle had the connections needed.

“Well the good news is it isn’t broken.” Carlisle announced flanked by Edward, as he threw the x-ray negatives against the exam light.

“So no cast?” I asked, excited to be free from a broken limb and the itchy hindrance.

“Just an air cast for two weeks." He answered; Alice smirked with satisfaction giving me a comical wink.

After hearing the good news I checked out for a minute. Lying down on the exam table while Carlisle fitted the air cast to my wrist. This day had so many ups and downs, creating more questions than answering them. The image of Rosalie coming to my rescue was etched on my brain. Alice had gushed, telling me the whole story on the way home from the hospital.

Victoria's powers were a lot like Alice's; instead of getting clear visions way ahead of the events Victoria only got short glimpses, moments before. Her powers of intuition helped lure Jasper and Edward away so James could escape. Emmett wanted to take James down alone, and Edward lost me in the woods, unable to pick up my scent.

"You okay honey?" Renee asked me for the hundredth time, peering into my room as I gave her a comforting nod.

"I'm fine Mom really, it's just a sprain."

Renee smiled, sitting on my bed anyway, smoothing the covers over me.

"When I got that call I thought it would be far worse." She cringed fighting away a thought.

"But I just fell, it was bound to happen, I was having way too much luck this year." I laughed trying to ease my mother out of the room so Edward could come out of the closet.

"I love you sweetheart." She finally said, kissing me lightly on the forehead.

"I love you too Mom, goodnight." She turned to me with a fleeting look of concern, before closing the door letting the darkness engulf me.

Edward emerged from the closet a devilish smile spread across his face.

"I should let you sleep." He sighed, walking towards the window as I held out my hand.

"Please, not tonight." I pleaded, as Edward walked towards me like a shy kitten.

"I didn't want you to see me like that Bella." He admitted, looking down ashamed.

"I was glad you were like that Edward, James deserved it. And today just proved how good you are, do you know how many peoples' lives you just saved including mine, again." His hand engulfed mine as I leaned back, his weight pushing the corner of the bed down.

"Goodnight Bella." He chimed, as my eyes fluttered, sleep overtaking me.

“I never got to thank Rosalie.” I muttered with my eyes closed as the thought dawned on me.

“She knows Bella.” Edward soothed, I felt his cold lips softly kiss my forehead before falling into the darkness.